Photo - Yuri Wahab, Managing Director for Cisco in Malaysia
The ICT industry in South East Asia has remained resilient over the last few years, despite the global economic recession. According to Gartner, the Asia Pacific ICT spending is on track to grow by 7.6 percent in 2012 and is expected to grow another 7.9 percent in 2013 to reach US$743 billion. Likewise, the Malaysian ICT industry has remained consistently strong over the years with ICT spending on track to reach US$5.2 billion in 2012, a 7 percent growth from 2011.
That said, given the global economic uncertainty, businesses may continue to adopt a conservative approach to ICT spending, with more emphasis on optimising IT budgets. They aim to invest in new technologies and enhancements that will reduce medium to long term costs and improve business agility, operational efficiencies and productivity.
The demand for solutions that fulfill this need, have fueled the rapid development of the ICT sector, which has significantly transforming the business landscape. This year, we have observed an increasingly mobile, virtual and social business environment with trends like bring your own device (BYOD) dominating the landscape. In response to this, we expect more businesses to invest in solutions such as unified communications, video, collaboration and diversified offerings of cloud-based software and applications aimed at reducing geographical and physical limitations to productivity.
The network today plays an essential role in defining an organisation's IT capabilities while spurring the development of the industry. It is also at the core of rising trends such as BYOD and emerging technologies such as cloud, virtualisation and video. A robust, scalable, dynamic and most importantly, a secure network will ensure that companies can migrate seamlessly to newer platforms and work cohesively across platforms. This presents a broad range of opportunities not just for Cisco as a networking leader, but to the ICT industry as a whole.
We have observed in Malaysia a greater proliferation of mobile devices at the workplace that signals an increasingly connected and mobile workforce. It was reported that the adoption of smartphones in Malaysia is expected to increase from 47 percent this year to 73 percent by the first quarter of 2013, whereas tablet adoption is expected to grow from 14 percent to 48 percent in the same period. These developments have resulted in telecommunications companies and service providers as they now need to diversify their service offerings and provide new solutions at competitive prices in order to remain ahead in the industry.
Businesses also need solutions to support trends like BYOD and enable a more mobile workforce and thrive in this rapidly changing business landscape. At Cisco, we see a need for organisations to incorporate a comprehensive approach to effectively design, manage, and control the access of personal devices to the corporate network with the aim of enhancing user experiences and productivity.