Bharat Bytes: India-US technology initiatives; GitHub’s program, Cisco’s new tool for SMBs; Indian public cloud services market; AI usage in India, China

Bharat Bytes is Computerworld India’s regular round-up of news from the world of IT.

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PM Modi, President Biden launch technology initiatives at bilateral in Tokyo

Prime Minister Narendra Modi and US President Joe Biden met along the side lines of the Tokyo Quad leaders’ meeting for a bilateral meeting on 24  May 2022. The two countries announced a technology cooperation initiative and investment initiative with the US development agency.

India and the US launched an Initiative on Crucial Emerging Technologies (iCET), an initiative led by the two National Security Councils to cooperate on critical and emerging technologies. The Indian readout listed examples such as quantum computing, artificial intelligence (AI), 5G/6G, biotech, semiconductors, and space.

The US, in its readout, said it would join six of India’s Technology Innovation Hubs to support at least 25 joint research project this year in areas including, AI, data, health, climate and agriculture. 

GitHub 'Sponsors' now available to developers in India

GitHub, the open-source repository platform owned by Microsoft, has announced that its 'Sponsors' program is now available in India. As a result, developers can now create 'Sponsors' profiles and start receiving financial support for their contributions to open source.

Developers in India who were already on the waitlist are now part of the programme.

Early users have already started receiving financial support, recognition from influential people in the open-source community, and GitHub Sponsors is even making it easier for them to secure internships and full-time positions, according to a company statement on 23 May 2022.

There are more than eight million developers on GitHub in India, making it the second-largest developer community on GitHub.

Indian developers have made over 200 million contributions to open source software projects in the last year. Over 10 million software projects globally depend on packages created in India.

Cisco Launches tool to help SMBs gauge cybersecurity preparedness

 Cisco has launched a new cybersecurity assessment tool to enable small and medium-sized businesses in the Asia Pacific to better understand their overall security posture, a release from Cisco said.

The new online assessment tool assesses the "cybersecurity readiness" of each organization through the lens of "Zero Trust," the concept that all attempts to access an organization's network architecture are not granted until trust can be verified. When a user accesses an application using a device, both the user and device are verified, with that trust continuously monitored. This helps secure the organization's applications and environments from any user, device, and location. 

Cybersecurity has become a key focus area for organizations as they embrace hybrid work, allowing employees to securely work from anywhere and through various devices. This has expanded the attack surface and increased cybersecurity risks beyond the perimeters that companies have traditionally built to protect the business.

The tool assesses the organization's level of maturity in six areas of Zero Trust, i.e., user and identity, device, networks, workload (applications), data, and security operations. Once the organization enters details of its security capabilities and policies, the tool assesses the overall security posture of the organization based on industry and sector benchmarks.

According to Cisco's Cybersecurity for SMBs: Asia Pacific Businesses Prepare for Digital Defense study, more than half (62%) of SMBs in India suffered cyber incidents in 2021. During the same period, three in four (74%) SMBs in India suffered cyber incidents that resulted in 85% of customer information loss to malicious actors, in addition to a tangible impact on business, the release said.

Indian Public Cloud Services Market to Grow at a CAGR of 24%

The overall Indian public cloud services market is expected to reach $13.5 billion by 2026, growing at a CAGR of 24% for 2021-26, according to a release by IDC.

The Indian public cloud services market, including infrastructure-as-a-service, platform-as-a-service solutions, and software-as-a-service, revenue totalled $ 4.6 billion for 2021, according to IDC’s Worldwide Semi-annual Public Cloud Services Tracker, 2H21 (July-December).

"With digital innovation leading the top business objectives for Indian organizations, cloud adoption is set to accelerate in 2022. Driven by the need for agility, flexibility, and faster access to digital technologies, cloud continues to gain momentum across segments. Additionally, the need to leverage data intelligently, is supreme and enterprises are able to do so with access to technologies that are built on a cloud foundation," Rishu Sharma, Associate Research Director, Cloud and Artificial Intelligence, IDC India, said.

SaaS continued to be the largest component of the overall public cloud services market, followed by IaaS and PaaS in 2021. Public cloud spending continued to increase among enterprises, with the top two service providers holding more than 45% of the Indian public cloud services market, the release said.

India continues to be among the fastest-growing market for public cloud service providers due to the robust demand from large enterprises, digital natives, and also from small and medium businesses in the country.

Indian, Chinese companies take lead in use of AI, says report

Indian and Chinese companies are taking the lead in use of artificial intelligence compared to their peers in major technically advanced countries, an IBM survey report said.

"Chinese and Indian companies are leading the way, with nearly 60 percent of IT professionals in those countries saying their organisations already actively use AI, compared with lagging markets like South Korea (22 per cent), Australia (24 per cent) the US (25 per cent) and the UK (26 per cent)," IBM's Global AI Adoption Index 2022 said.

It said that IT professionals in the financial services, media, energy, automotive, oil and aerospace industries are most likely to report their companies have actively deployed AI, while organisations in industries such as retail, travel and government/ federal services and healthcare are the least likely.

The survey was conducted from March 30-April 12, 2022, among a sample of 7,502 senior business decision-makers with some influence over their company's IT decisions, including 500 respondents each in the US, UK, France, Germany, Spain, Italy, China, India, Singapore, Australia, Canada, UAE, and South Korea, and 1,000 respondents in across the Latin America region (Brazil, Mexico, Colombia, Argentina, Chile, Peru).

Copyright © 2022 IDG Communications, Inc.

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