Alibaba Cloud Expands Data Centers
Alibaba Cloud, in direct competition to Amazon and Microsoft, plans to launch four new data centers across the world, in Australia, Dubai, Germany and Japan. This will give it eight centers worldwide to cover customers on a global basis and allows the company to increase its ability to compete against cloud computing rivals.
Alibaba’s YunOS overtakes Apple’s iOS as China’s #2 smartphone operating system
YunOS, the mobile operating system developed by Alibaba Group will pull ahead of Apple's iOS by the end of this year to become the second-largest operating system in China with a projected 14% share. It is projected that total shipments of YunOS-powered smartphones will top 100 million units in 2016.
Asia Internet Access Increases
Asia consumers should see increased internet access with the completion of the Asia Pacific Gateway (SPG) Submarine Cable. The 10,900 km long cable which has been built by Japan’s NEC Corporation, connects Japan, South Korea, China, Hong Kong, Taiwan, Vietnam, Thailand, Malaysia and Singapore and will feature 100 Gigabit per second (Gpbs) optical transmission capabilities and 54 Terabytes of capacity.
Chinese Venture Capital Firms focus on Korean AR & VR Start-Ups
Chinese venture capital companies are actively pursuing investment opportunities for domestic virtual reality (VR) and augmented reality (AR) start-ups. Nine Chinese VCs participated in a recent cooperation seminar in Seoul and Chinese VC firms are focusing on Korea start-ups in order to acquire both new contents and AR and VR technology.
Facebook Builds China Censorship Tool
In a bid to China censorship regulations, Facebook has developed a software tool that can prevent posts from appearing in users newsfeeds, based upon geographic factors. Facebook will not suppress the posts itself, but will offer the software to a third party —who will then have full control of content that will show up in users' feeds.
Google Launches Android Pay in Japan
Android Pay will launch in Japan this week as Google partners with Rakuten to power Android Pay using the Rakuten “EDY” payment system. EDY is available at over 470,000 stores in Japan including Domino’s Pizza, Family Mart, Lawson and McDonald’s stores. The mobile wallet app can be downloaded to supported devices that run on Android KitKat 4.4 or newer.
Hoa Sao Group will cooperate with BellSystems24
Hoa Sao Group, Vietnam’s leading contact center company will sell 49% of its stock to BellSystems24, Japan’s leading contact center / telemarketing company. Hoa Sao was established in 2006 and has eight contact centers in Vietnam. BellSystem24 plans to expand its services to local Vietnamese firms and provide of support for Japanese companies entering the Vietnamese market.
Honda Motors to Invest in Grab in SE Asia
Honda Motors has announced that it will make a strategic investment into Grab, the ride-hailing APP that is active in Southeast Asia. Grab, which is based in Singapore is battling industry leader Uber in both the “two wheel” and “four wheel” categories across the Indonesia, Malaysia, Philippine, Singapore, Thailand and Vietnam markets.
Huawei will train Telecom Students from Laos
Huawei, one of China's leading Information Communications Technology (ICT) companies, has launched a program in Vientiane to nurture ICT talents for Laos. Ten students from Laos have been selected to take part in a two-week ICT study trip to China and will study advanced technologies of 5G, LTE and cloud computing with Huawei’s top experts.
Japanese city tags Dementia Sufferers with Barcodes
A company in Saitama Prefecture has developed tiny QR-coded nail stickers, each of which carries a unique identity number to keep track of senior citizens with dementia who are prone to getting lost — tagging their fingers and toes with scan-able barcodes. If an elderly person becomes disorientated, police will find the local city hall, its telephone number and the wearer’s ID all embedded in the QR code.
Japanese Immigration “Biocarts” Show Airport Innovation
Japanese immigration authorities have deployed 81 immigration “biocarts” at the Kansai, Naha and Takamatsu airports to help foreign visitors complete immigration procedures. The biocarts allow visitors to submit their photos and fingerprint ID’s and have helped decrease waiting times by up to 40%. The biocart system will be expanded to 12 domestic airports in 2017.
Japan To Build World’s Fastest Supercomputer
Japan’s Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry has announced that it will spend $175 million USD to build the worlds fastest computer, with a speed of 130 petaflops. Prime Minister Shinzo Abe has called for academics, companies and the government to work together so Japan can win in batteries, renewable energy, robotics and other new / hi-growth industries.
Malaysia Appoints Jack Ma as Digital Economic Adviser
Malaysian Prime Minister Najib Razak announced that Chinese internet guru, Jack Ma, has been appointed as the country’s digital economic adviser. Najib revealed Ma’s appointment during a recent trip to China that included the launch of the Alitrip Malaysia Tourism Pavilion – an e-commerce platform that features Malaysia’s tourism products.
54% of Vietnamese are Online
52 million Vietnamese are now online making Vietnam the fifth-largest online population in Asia-Pacific. Research from Boston Consulting Group and Google notes that digital households in Vietnam account for 83% of the category value in everyday FMCG products and with 72% of Vietnamese owning a smartphone, the popularity of online services will continue to increase.