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Big Data in Asia Pacific, from the perspective of an Oracle CTO

Madura McCormack | Dec. 13, 2012
Kevin Walsh of Oracle talks about the adoption of Big Data in Asia Pacific and where it will be in the future

Marketing intelligence company IDC expects Big Data growth in the Asia Pacific excluding Japan (APEJ) region to grow to be 42.6 percent bigger than it is in 2012. A popular buzzword for the year, next to BYOD and cloud computing, Big Data seems to be a recurring topic in technology circles.

Kevin Walsh, chief technology officer at Oracle Asia Research and Development Centers, gives his view on Big Data in Asia Pacific and his projections for the future.

Big Data analytics is such a ubiquitous term now. Are companies in the AP region adopting Big Data or are they still speculative?

There has been tremendous interest in Big Data and Analytics in the Asia Pacific region. Many companies in the region have built a presence on social media and are looking at ways to more efficiently track consumers' feelings about their brands, products and services. Big Data Analytics is allowing them to track this in a more automated and systematic way and the results are proving to be very promising. It enables them to extract value out of the new sources of Big Data, while at the same time leverage existing investment in IT systems such as enterprise applications and data warehouses.

What is the rate of analytics adoption here as compared to other regions?

Most firms have implemented some form of business intelligence and this is being augmented with more advanced analytics. In AP, while the rate of adoption is higher in some of the larger markets such as Australia, China and Japan, customers are already exploring this in other parts of the region. 

In which verticals have you seen the fastest adoption of Big Data analytics?

The fastest growing users of Big Data are the telecom companies as they are inherently information businesses at the core. Through their customers' usage of smartphones and mobile applications, large amounts of data are generated to increase their efficiency as well as aggregate data for use by other industries. Telcos are using Big Data models to identify gaps in network coverage and better understand customer sentiments about the devices that they offer for use on these networks. 

Governments are also leveraging Big Data for a range of solutions including public safety, transportation, and citizen contact centres. 

The third most active vertical is the banking industry. Many banks are using analytic models which combine their traditional data warehouse with new sources of data including social network feeds, customer location data, and merchant information. This provides additional services to both merchants and consumers as analytics is applied to improve their segmentation and traditional risk management systems.

Where do you see Big Data analytics five years from now?

According to IDC, "Big Data will earn its place as the next 'Must Have' competency in 2012", and Oracle believes that the use of analytics is already becoming pervasive and will continue to do so.  We are seeing the trend of analytics becoming part of applications such as ERP, as exemplified by Oracle's Fusion applications. It is no longer sufficient to rely on reports or even standard business intelligence tools to make mission critical decisions. 


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