How Cloud Computing is Changing the IT Outsourcing Business Model ?

There has been an increased importance to Software as a Service (SaaS), Platform as a Service (PaaS), and Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS). These have been regarded as disruptive changes in the way technology services are delivered.

Will cloud computing make the traditional outsourcing irrelevant?
Although cloud computing has a disruptive impact on traditional outsourcing, it would not make traditional outsourcing completely irrelevant. Cloud-based offerings are standardised and meant for large number of audiences. Large corporations have their individual requirements that need a customised solution and they also remain skeptical of security issues in public cloud computing. Application Development and Maintenance work is likely to remain relevant for such firms. However, non-core functions, such as Human Resource Management (HRM), have been increasingly moved to cloud.

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Baidu Weigou Testing Google MarketPlace / Product Search Like Ads

Baidu Engineering TeamChinese Search Giant Baidu reportedly has been testing a web application, Baidu Weigou. As part of the service, Baidu will display product information and prices from e-commerce sites (similar to that of Google Product Search) under the search box, based on the product queries entered by users. Clicking on these products will direct users to a “fast buying” channel on the same search results page. Users are able to place orders by simply leaving their mobile phone number, recipient name and delivery address. Currently only cash on delivery (COD) is supported.

According to our channel checks, the service currently only supports a limited number of products for transaction, such as the iPhone4S, Wu Liang Ye (a famous Chinese liquor brand), Dove Chocolate, etc. Meanwhile, fuzzy search queries (e.g. an input for “iPhone” instead of “iPhone4S”) do not seem to trigger the Weigou feature.

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The Rise of Analytics in Computing / IT Services

In recent years we have witnessed a rapid proliferation of data globally. The total size of data center traffic is estimated by Cisco1 to be ~2.6 ZB and expected to reach ~6.6 ZB by 2016 at ~31% CAGR over 2011-16. As per Wipro’s estimates, the amount of big data stored globally is to the extent of ~6,500 petabytes.

With data proliferation, there is a greater need to analyze the data and use it to tweak systems and processes as well as provide real business insights. Worldwide business analytics services revenues have thus grown at ~10% CAGR over 2009-11 in a period where overall IT Services spending has grown at ~5% CAGR.

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Cloud Hype was greater than reality

Over the past few years, there was a lot of hype around cloud-based technologies and their benefits. Today, most enterprises have done / continue to do cloud pilot projects, proofs of concept and initial implementations. However clients still must get comfortable with new contract structures and address concerns on security and data privacy.

Cloud broadly encompasses three main opportunities – (1) SaaS – provision of software; (2) PaaS – an application platform; and (3) IaaS – storage and infrastructure. Opportunities also exist for consultants, integrators and aggregators who help clients progress into the cloud and manage a range of services on the cloud.

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Weixin (WeChat) Vs Kakao Talk

Weixin users are young and educated. For example, 74% of the users are between 20 and 30 years old. University students and white-collar workers constitute over 90% of its user base. According to Tencent, it will begin testing various business models. Entertainment, such as mobile game and e-commerce, may become the viable monetization channels for … Read more

Tencent Pushing TenPay Via Weixin(chat)

Tencent has continued to make progress with Weixin [its chat service which has 300 mn users] membership. By scanning the QR codes, users can become members of different merchants, and enjoy various discounts and benefits. Merchants can target customers with particular promotions and will be informed of the acceptance rate of such campaigns. Budget hotel … Read more

InfoEdge Banking on Pick up in Recruitment – LinkedIn Still Not a Threat

Info Edges Job Speak Index has indicated a pick-up in the past two months, driven by an improvement in hiring trends at software, BPO (business process outsourcing), and pharma companies. Info Edge gets around 80% of its revenue from the recruitment business (primarily, which has seen slower growth in the past 2-3 quarters due to the weak macro-economic environment and low business confidence. We expects hiring activity to pick up in FY14 as offshore IT services spending should increase driven by a relatively stable macroeconomic environment, relative stability in large client organisations, and regulatory deadlines that will force installations and/or upgrades of IT systems in key sectors, such as banking.

Channel checks with IT company management and leading HR

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Open Table Restaurants + HomeAway Vacation Rental Listings

OpenTable shows inventory at the end of February is tracking up 1% q/q in North America (vs. our 3% q/q est.) and International inventory is flat q/q (vs. our 4% q/q est.). Separately, The National Restaurant Association’s Restaurant (NRA) Performance Index increased to 100.6 in January from 99.7 in December. Aggregate vacation rental listings on … Read more hotel count + Linked In Job Posts Grow

At the end of February, Priceline’s had roughly 277.4K hotels on its site, and, at the 3 month avg. run-rate of 8K net new hotels per month, appears on track to exceed our estimate for 281K hotels by the end of 1Q. Of the three key quarterly metrics (hotels, rooms per hotel and … Read more