COVID-19 crisis has accelerated importance of AI, hybrid cloud: IBM CEO Arvind Krishna

NEW DELHI: Digital transformation using artificial intelligence and hybrid cloud has accelerated amid the COVID-19 pandemic and these new technologies can play an important role in helping companies gain competitive advantage, IBM Chief Executive Officer Arvind Krishna said on Tuesday.

Speaking during a keynote at the IBM’s Think Digital 2020 conference, Krishna, who took charge last month, said the pace of adoption of transformation journeys by enterprises has been “compacted” into months.

“The importance of hybrid cloud and AI has accelerated. What has changed is the pace at which they’re being adopted. Transformation journeys (of) last few years are now being compacted into months…They’re looking for long lasting answers on what they can do with technology to address the key issues that COVID-19 has brought to light,” he said.

He noted that the COVID-19 pandemic has emphasised on the “critical importance of technology solutions that enable speed, flexibility, insight and innovation”.

“Choosing which technology platforms power your business is the most consequential decision you can make. Technology platforms are the basis for competitive advantage in the 21st century.

“They determine how quickly you can pivot to new market opportunities, how well you serve your clients, how much you can scale. And how fast you can respond to a crisis, like the one we are facing today,” he said.

Krishna added that the scenario also presents an opportunity to develop new solutions, new ways of working and new partnerships that will benefit companies and their customers.

IBM has announced a broad range of AI-powered capabilities and services that are designed to help chief information officers automate their IT infrastructures to be more resilient to future disruptions and to help reduce costs.

He also announced the launch of three new initiatives focused on artificial intelligence, 5G technologies for telcos and public cloud.

The company is also running a challenge for developers across the world called ‘Call for Code’ which is looking for solutions on climate change and COVID-19 crisis, Krishna said, adding that the challenge is open till July for the pandemic.

“As difficult as these times might be, we see plenty of light at the end of the tunnel,” he said.

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