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The APO organized a study mission on Cloud Computing Technology to the USA, 28 November–2 December 2016. Eighteen participants from 11 member countries gathered in Silicon Valley, the world’s most innovative destination, to observe the latest trends in cloud computing, the Internet of Things (IoT), and their implications for SMEs in the Asia-Pacific.
The delegates were briefed on the concept of cloud computing, including its history, trends, technologies, and business models, and Silicon Valley’s entrepreneurial culture and innovation-friendly ecosystem. The five-day mission also examined extensive applications of cloud technology in the fast-changing business world, such as those in the industrial IoT, consumer products, services (finance, health, and entertainment), and individual project and corporate management. Through SME case studies, the delegates were familiarized with the benefits of cloud technology use and the vast market potential created by sensor technologies, the cloud, and big data.
In addition to studying the cloud concept and applications, mission delegates visited major IT giants and cloud service players Amazon Web Services, Microsoft, Google, and Intel to learn about future trends in the cloud revolution and the individual strengths and strategies of those companies in the virtual world as well as their global scope.
Stanford University Business School, known for its spirit of innovation and free thinking, hosted mission members for a half-day tour plus presentation on cloud-based banking operations. Two additional visits were made to Silicon Valley start-ups utilizing cloud technologies to identify niche markets and provide innovative solutions in workload management and animation production. Delegates were introduced to the Asia Cloud Computing Association, which analyzes trends in Internet development and promotes the adoption of cloud technology in Asia, to exchange ideas on the opportunities and challenges their countries face in the Internet and cloud era.
Co-founder of both GridMarkets and Asia Cloud Computing Association Mark Ross told delegates that, “The biggest challenges of cloud development in Asia are infrastructure, skills, and regulations,” but saw great potential for Asian countries to “catch up with leading economies in leveraging the power of the cloud.”
Sharing his experience of the intensive week-long study mission in Silicon Valley, Deputy Director Dinh Tien Duc, FSI Vietnam JSC, appreciated the opportunity to interact with “cloud giants” and said that he had gained a “thorough understanding of cloud computing and its trends and applications” from the study mission. Amazed by the atmosphere of innovation and first-hand observations of the latest cloud applications, CEO Prahas Vichakshana, Nanobotz IT Solutions (Pvt.) Ltd., Sri Lanka, was “hugely inspired by seeing these opportunities presented.” He planned to share the observations with the National Productivity Secretariat and adopt cloud technologies to increase the productivity of his and his clients’ businesses.