Advanced Computing in the Age of AI|Saturday, April 4, 2020
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More Partners Sign On to IBM Cloud 

IBM rolled out new cloud developer services and tools this week while announcing a partnership with one of India's largest IT outsourcing vendors as it continues to extend its cloud business to capitalize on the enterprise shift to hybrid clouds.

IBM (NYSE: IBM) said Nov. 12 it would partner will Bangalore-base HCL Technologies (NSE: HCLTECH) to jointly build hybrid cloud services. HCL will use IBM's Bluemix development platform to build cloud applications targeting the Internet of Things (IoT) and automated IT service management.

Separately, IBM unveiled subscription-based version of its developerWorks suite of cloud development tools this week designed to speed the prototyping and deployment of cloud projects. The "premium" version of the developerWorks community targets the estimated 5 million developers using the cloud as a development platform, IBM said.

The subscription version provides access to IBM Cloud development and infrastructure tools, SoftLayer infrastructure running in datacenters as well as the Bluemix platform-as-a-service.

Among other services, IBM said the developWorks package includes a 12-month subscription to Bluemix for application development and one year of access to its SoftLayer infrastructure-as-a-service.

Meanwhile, IBM said HCL would use its Bluemix to develop IoT sensors deployed to collect and exchange data from networks of sensors. HCL is developing IoT networks as an adjunct to its flagship IT services and "enterprise digitalization" businesses.

Additionally, the partners said HCL would use SoftLayer infrastructure to offer new services such as bare-metal and virtual servers, storage along with networking, security and other hybrid cloud services.

HCL said it would combine Bluemix and SoftLayer services with its cloud orchestration platform and its systems integration capabilities developed as a global IT and software development outsourcing specialist. HCL provides hybrid cloud infrastructure management services and an orchestration platform to enterprises through its MyCloud service. The platform helps provision and manage cloud infrastructure while enabling capabilities like metering and chargeback on the cloud.

IBM has been steadily expanding its Bluemix offerings while broadening the footprint of the platform-as-a-service launched in 2014. Lately, it has added a streaming analytics service and cloud-based applications like a data-warehousing tool. IBM claims to be adding more than 15,000 Bluemix users per week.

Along with its new partner in India, IBM announced in October that Bluemix would be made available in the Chinese market in collaboration with 21Vianet Group, a datacenter services provider based on Beijing. The partners said the collaboration is intended to boost hybrid cloud development around applications like cognitive computing, data analytics and IoT application development.

IBM also sees China as a key emerging market for cloud-based application development. It cited industry estimates that 10 percent of the world's application developers are based in China. The deal also reflects Beijing's push to spur technology innovation using cloud-based technologies.

About the author: George Leopold

George Leopold has written about science and technology for more than 30 years, focusing on electronics and aerospace technology. He previously served as executive editor of Electronic Engineering Times. Leopold is the author of "Calculated Risk: The Supersonic Life and Times of Gus Grissom" (Purdue University Press, 2016).

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