Digital transformation is the transformation of business activities and processes that fully leverage the capabilities and opportunities of new digital technologies. There are many cases of companies who have adopted new technologies but have not transformed their business process or business model to fully leverage the technology. An example is a bank who adopts mobile technology so that a loan request can be entered on a mobile app. While the mobile app is easy to use, it can still take weeks to approve and process the loan if the back office processes are not changed. This puts them at a disadvantage when competing with Fintech companies who can process a loan request in two days.
Fintech companies have an advantage in that they are technology companies that were born in the cloud and do not have the legacy that traditional financial companies have. In order to compete, traditional companies must take a bi-modal approach to digital transformation. They must continue to enhance and modernize their core applications while they transition to new systems of innovation. In the case of the bank processing loans they need to have access to more information in order to evaluate the credit worthiness of the applicant. If that information is locked up in different silos, it will be difficult to provide the agility required to shorten the loan process.
Traditional companies may have an advantage over Fintechs, if they can unlock the wealth of data that is already in their legacy systems. The key to success will be the ability to free the data from their legacy silos, and use them to augment new sources of data that can be analyzed to create new business opportunities. Object storage with its rich metadata capabilities, open interfaces, and scalability can eliminate these silos. However, no single object storage product can do it all from mobile, to edge, to cloud, to core. There must be an integrated portfolio of object management products that can optimize and modernize the traditional core systems while activating and innovating new business processes with technologies like cloud, mobile, analytics, and big data. The lack of an integrated approach will create increased complexity and costs.
Today Hitachi Data Systems announced enhancements to our Hitachi Content Platform portfolio which will further enhance its value as a digital transformation platform
Hitachi Content Platform (HCP) is an object storage solution that enables IT organizations and cloud service providers to store, share, sync, protect, preserve, analyze and retrieve file data from a single system. Version 8 is the latest version of the object storage repository. The HCP repository is usually mirrored across two site to provide availability and eliminate the need for back up. Geo Protection services has been added which essentially does an erasure coding of objects across three to six sites, so that data is protected when any site fails. It also uses less storage capacity than full replication of data. With erasure coding across three site you save 25% capacity compared to mirroring, and with six sites you can save up to 40%. Erasure coding will impact retrieval time so provisions are offered to retain whole copies locally for a specified time. The support for KVM, the use of 10TB drives in the storage nodes, a 55% increase in objects per node and simplified licensing has been added to improve the economics of private versus public cloud.
Hitachi Data Ingestor (HDI) is an elastic- scale, backup-free cloud file server with advanced storage and data management capabilities. It appears as a standard NFS or CIFS server to a user but every file is replicated over HTTP to an HCP so it does not require backup. When the local storage begins to reach a threshold, the older files are stubbed out to HCP so it appears to be a bottomless filer. HDI v6.1 has been enhanced with R/W content sharing and universal file migration improvements.
HCP Anywhere provides file synchronization and sharing on mobile devices with end user data protection and mobile device management to increase productivity and reduce risks in a secure, simple and smart way. Version 3 provides next generation Windows client with VDI support and thin client desktop client (selective caching and Synching). There are also enhancements for data protection, collaboration, and usability such as Android app enhancements. You can use “My Documents” as HCP Anywhere directory and protect your files from ransom ware. Any alteration of your file would be stored as a new version, so recovery would simply be a matter of accessing the previous version.
Hitachi Content Intelligence was announced in 4Q 2016 and is now available for general availability and rounds out the HCP portfolio with a new data analytics and recommendation capability. With Content Intelligence, organizations can connect to and aggregate data from siloed repositories, transforming and enriching data as it’s processed and centralizing the results for authorized users to access. By balancing our existing HCP Portfolio, Hitachi is now the only object storage vendor in the market with seamlessly integrated cloud-file gateway, enterprise file synchronization and sharing, and big data exploration and analytics. Hitachi Content Intelligence is capable of connecting to and indexing data that resides on HCP, HDI, HCP Anywhere, and cloud repositories. Once data repositories are connected, Hitachi Content Intelligence supports multiple processing workflows for analytics, extraction, transformation and enrichment stages that can be applied as your data is processed.
Last year Gartner and IDC gave the Hitachi Content Platform portfolio their highest marks, recognising it as the only offering that allows organisations to bring together object storage, file synch and share, and cloud storage gateways to create a tightly integrated, truly secure, simple and smart cloud storage solution. Hitachi is further solidifying that lead with today's announcements.
For more details see the announcement letter