Cloud computing is the latest technology wave that has caught the attention worldwide. What are your views on the potential of cloud computing in India and in which key sectors do you foresee their applications?
India is a growing economy with ample business and growth opportunities
and thus, is on radar of cloud computing companies as well to offer their innovative products and services. It is not the replacement market but the green field projects that are very likely to adopt cloud technology. There are various case studies which show that the Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) are gaining productivity out of cloud adoption. In fact, TCS, HCL, Sify have already launched their cloud strategy for the SMEs. All telecom companies are also lining up to provide cloud solutions in India. Besides the IT sector, cloud computing deployment models also cater to the requirements of private entities, public organisations and general end-users. A private government cloud model is a deployment model that is exclusively managed by public organisations where they may offer a number of services to general public or they may utilise the cloud for their own purposes by sharing resources or internal management.
Being the leading technology solution provider for many departments in the American government across many verticals, tell us your views on the business prospects in India?
With the Government of India investing in a number of national initiatives such as national knowledge networks (NKN), network for spectrum (NFS), national broadband plan (NBP), the prospects for telecommunication business in the government sector in India is significant. The timely implementation of these projects using the right technology and technology partner will be critical to the Government of India.
The Indian telecommunications market continues to grow exponentially, and we are committed to offer as per customer needs in the market. For example, we’ve grown our customer base in India by offering 3G serviceenabling technologies for a large number of mobile service providers.
As you now have a head office in India, what is your business strategy and product line that is your priority?
Tell us more on the various current partners in India and your take on collaborations for business in India? India is an important growth market to Ciena for all of these solutions. In fact, for several years already, our India R&D facility has been conducting advanced product development for storage extension, optical transport, multi-service switching, access and network management for our customers worldwide. With our new office in Mumbai, we’re better able to leverage that local expertise and deliver specialised service to customers across the country. Next-gen high capacity optical transport and switching as well as Carrier Ethernet-based wireless backhaul and business services have all been identified as markets targeted for greater investment by carriers. We see strong alignment of our portfolio with these critical network priorities with a solution set that enables our customers to improve their competitive positions through the rapid, efficient and profitable delivery of new services.
We plan to exploit our strong market position, increased scale and clear technology leadership to take share and believe we have greater opportunity to expand our product footprint within our existing customer base while winning new customers around the globe. And, our increased scale gives us the ability to more effectively support a robust yet focused portfolio as well as a larger customer base.
As Internet connectivity becomes a reality in India, tell us more on the role and importance of a converged optical Ethernet as the next wave of bandwidth management? What can India learn from the west?
Network operators are challenged to handle constantly evolving demands on the network from trends like cloud computing, virtualization and advanced voice, video and data services. In addition, the move to WiMAX and LTE standards in mobile broadband and the need for capacity and survivability in undersea deployments, are putting increased pressure on service providers for more reliable and efficient wireless backhaul and submarine networks. Operators must begin to build and scale their infrastructures to accommodate this exponential bandwidth growth while offering efficiency and reliability for all traffic types and application.
Converged optical Ethernet is framed around three key values: maximizing the capacity, scalability and reliability of customers’ networks through optical technology; maximising the flexibility, efficiency and economics of their networks through ubiquitous Ethernet technology; and uniting those capabilities with integrated control plane and management software.
Compared to the developed countries, what are some of the key policy measures that India should make to strengthen and secure its technology infrastructure?
When a service provider or any government agency selects an equipment vendor to build their core backbone, it is not just a techno commercial decision. These networks typically last for 10-15 years. These networks are literally the ‘backbone’ of country’s business, which carry all voice, data – these can be for mobile,video, internal data etc. For starters, I would
say security and the control of the technology/ optical transport backbone is of utmost importance for any country and policies should ensure the same. Another key measure is a policy to better manage the Out Side Plant (OSP) i.e, Standards around OSP operations and maintenance.
As technology infrastructure is the backbone of any IT ecosystem, what are the three technologies that will define stability and success of any bandwidth-based technology adoption in the Asian countries?
There are three key technologies that I believe can help drive greater stability and success of any bandwidth-based technology adoption in Asia. Those being:
• Coherent optics that can support higher bandwidth speeds, currently as high as 100 Gb/s.
• Optical control plane technologies that use software control for instant, automated bandwidth delivery.
• Ethernet switching technologies that help simplify IP/Ethernet service architectures
What are the major challenges that you foresee working in India with Indian government?
India is still a nascent market for cloud computing. There is a $1 billion worth of opportunity waiting to be tapped into but Indian firms are yet to bite. It seems to be a case of partly not wanting to change status quo and partly apprehensions regarding the safety of keeping confidential data on the net. In addition, there is a lack of platform for leading research scientists and industry practitioners to deliberate on latest trends, best technologies and socioeconomic approaches towards deployment of cloud computing solutions in India.
Moreover, the moment we talk about more people using the internet, e have to adequately ramp up infrastructural facilities. Broadband connectivity is one of the 6 programmes covered under Bharat Nirman which aims at ensuring broadband coverage to all 2.5 lakh panchayats by 2012. However, a serious and dedicated effort to popularize cloud computing will require a greater handshaking between the Government and the IT society. This is one of the major challenges that any developing IT brand is most likely to be facing in India.