Huawei has laid out its ambitions for its cloud business, revealing it expects to form a global cloud alliance with operators and is confident it can become a major global cloud player in its own right.
Opening the Huawei Connect customer event in Shanghai today, acting CEO Guo Ping said the company believed the cloud business would evolve along similar lines to airlines, with the formation of global alliances of service providers. (See Huawei Takes Aim at AWS, Google With Public Cloud Move.)
"It would be impossible for one or two companies to meet all the requirements of digital transformation," he said, explaining that each country has different requirements and rules on data sovereignty and other regulations.
"We expect in the future we could build a cloud alliance around the world.
"It would be comprised of members from different countries so that altogether they could provide global cloud services. That is the cloud alliance that we have in mind."
For example, given the existing partnership between Deutsche Telekom AG (NYSE: DT)'s T-Systems division and Huawei, the best choice for a German enterprise wanting to operate in China would be to choose T-Systems International GmbH in Germany and Huawei Technologies Co. Ltd. in China.
Speaking before 20,000 attendees at the company's flagship customer event, Guo said the biggest difference between the Chinese vendor and established Internet companies is that Huawei "does not monetize the data from its users. We monetize from our own technologies. That is why a lot of foreign companies come to China and are willing to work with us."
Guo said the world's cloud market would be dominated by a handful of global players and that Huawei believes it can be one of them.
He said clouds around the world "will begin to converge -- becoming more and more centralized. In the future, we predict there will be five major clouds in the world. Huawei will work with our partners to build one of those five clouds, and we've got the technology and know-how to do it."
Huawei is investing heavily in cloud platforms and security, and tipping money into new fields like big data and artificial intelligence, he said.
The Chinese vendor used today's event to launch a suite of AI-assisted services called enterprise intelligence, including machine learning, AI training and reasoning, and services such as image and voice recognition.
Among the customers showcased at today's event are CERN, which has cut maintenance costs by two thirds after running Large Hadron Collider workloads on a DT-Huawei public cloud, and the Shenzhen Police, which said Huawei's solution had helped it to filter images of traffic violations ten times more efficiently than before.
Since establishing a new cloud business unit six months ago, Huawei claims to have released 40 new cloud services, increased its cloud user base by 238% and added 4,500 service features.
— Robert Clark, contributing editor, special to Light Reading