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Cloud computing spending to get a boost in Asia this year

A survey sponsored by Alibaba Cloud found that 84 per cent of users of cloud services in Asia expect to increase their spending on cloud computing this year, while more than 80 per cent are planning a full cloud migration within two years.

The increase in spending is expected to come mainly from Thailand, Indonesia, the Philippines, Hong Kong and Singapore, according to the survey results published on Tuesday. Most respondents in Japan and South Korea indicated that they would maintain spending on cloud computing at current levels.

Among key industries using cloud services, video gaming is expected to see the sharpest increase in investment, followed by media, telecoms, internet and financial services, according to the survey.

“With cloud infrastructure being the ultimate foundation for many cutting-edge innovations such as generative [artificial intelligence], we are as committed as ever to providing proven cloud-based solutions for businesses in different industries and supporting their seamless migration to the cloud services,” Selina Yuan, vice-president of Alibaba Group Holding and president of international business for Alibaba Cloud Intelligence, said in a statement.

Alibaba Cloud commissioned global market research firm NielsenIQ to conduct the survey, which collected responses to online questionnaires from the end of September to early October 2022. Feedback came from 1,000 cloud strategy decision-makers in small to large businesses that are currently using cloud services in Hong Kong, Malaysia, Singapore, the Philippines, Indonesia, Thailand, Japan and South Korea.

Alibaba, owner of the South China Morning Post, is betting its future growth on cloud services as its e-commerce operations grapple with weak consumer spending and intensified competition in China. Alibaba chairman Daniel Zhang Yong personally took over the cloud unit after a 24-hour-long systems crash in Hong Kong and Macau late last year.

“Cloud computing is one of Alibaba’s core strategies for the future,” Zhang said in the company’s most recent earnings call. “We believe this is a critical period for technological breakthrough and development in cloud computing and AI.”

Alibaba is also eyeing other Asian markets as key areas for overseas growth. Alibaba Cloud revenue growth slowed to 3 per cent in the December quarter from 4 per cent in the previous quarter.

Alibaba was the fourth-largest cloud infrastructure service provider in the world in the fourth quarter, behind Amazon Web Services, Microsoft Azure and Google Cloud, according to the latest global cloud spending report published by market data firm Synergy Research Group in February. South China Morning Post

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