The nation’s top telecoms operator, Chunghwa Telecom Co (中華電信), yesterday inked a memorandum of understanding (MOU) with -Beijing-based Skycloud Technology (China) Inc (天云科技) to provide Internet-based computing and data storage services, or cloud computing services, in China.
That would open the door for Chunghwa Telecom to vie for a share of China’s massive cloud computing business, which Beijing pinpointed as a major industry in its new five-year economic development plan which runs until 2015.
In Beijing alone, China is aiming to boost cloud computing industry revenues to as much as 200 billion yuan (US$30 billion) from different sectors including infrastructure construction, application development and hardware device manufacturing.
“Skycloud’s cloud computing investment in Beijing is part of the plan,” company chairman Edward Tian (田溯寧) said yesterday in a media briefing in Taipei. “Cloud computing is a promising next industry after PCs and the Internet.”
Based on the MOU, Chunghwa Telecom would help Skycloud build a cloud computing center in Beijing with necessary solutions.
In addition, the Taiwanese company said it also planned to join force with Skycloud to bid for cloud computing infrastructure building projects from China’s three biggest telecoms operators, including China Mobile Ltd (中國移動), Chugnhwa Telecom vice president Lee Yen-sung (李炎松) said.
He also indicated that Chung-hwa Telecom would start offering cloud computing services such as software delivery over the Internet to help people keep track of their electricity meters and door security among other online applications, no later than the second quarter of next year.
Skycloud has also been talking to local chipmaker VIA Technology Inc (威盛電子) on the possibility of forming a Chinese joint venture probably in March to manufacture end-products such as tablet devices for customers to deliver its cloud computing services, Tian said.
Tian said his company had already formed three cloud-computing joint ventures with local firms as Skycloud found Taiwanese companies to be particularly adept at building cloud computing platforms and developing related applications.
In related news, local WiMAX operator Tatung InfoComm Co Ltd (大同電信) yesterday said it aimed to increase its number of subscribers to 100,000 next year from around 10,000 at present by expanding coverage and offering more end devices.
Tatung said it is in talks with unspecified companies to provide iPad-like tablet devices to subscribers to access to the Internet using its data cards. It also hopes to offer handheld devices like smartphones and e-readers next year to boost subscription levels.
Tatung is also scheduled to expand its WiMAX coverage to Tainan City tomorrow after offering a high-speed data transmission service in Penghu, Kaohsiung, Hualien and Pingtung counties.