IBM has outlined a series of major updates to its cloud portfolio, building on its recent £2bn acquisition of SoftLayer.
IBM bought the company in June in an effort to broaden its cloud platform into all areas of private, public and hybrid, as the demands from customers for a mix of all three environments grows.
Now, the firm has announced that a number of its offerings will be available on the SoftLayer platform. The first is a new Social Learning platform, which will be offered as a hybrid service.
This is aimed at a number of industries including retail, energy, healthcare and governments, and is designed to allow organisations to share and collaborate on videos across numerous locations. It will be available from December 2013.
The firm will also be bringing tools to the SoftLayer platform that it is acquiring from a recent deal for mobile marketing firm Xtify, with the aim to help firms access tools to try and increase customer engagement and drive in-store sales.
Furthermore, the firm also announced a new Mobile Feedback App that can be hosted in the cloud. This allows senior staff to access the thoughts and opinions of staff so they can monitor productivity, engagement and retention feedback from staff.
Finally, a new Survey Analytics tool is also being announced, which is available immediately and is designed to make it easier for survey data to be interpreted. It does this by presenting information from surveys in the form of heat maps, so trends are more easily visible.
It can handle data points into the millions and is designed to help firms make real use of data gathered in company-wide surveys.
The use of SoftLayer as the firm’s cloud platform appears to be justified. It announced that since the deal was announced SoftLayer added 1,600 new clients to its existing base of 21,000 in 140 countries, underlining the strength of its offerings for enterprise.
Dennis Quan, vice president of IBM Cloud Infrastructure Services, said the numbers and new announcements today showed that the cloud was becoming a key pillar in the IT setup of firms of all sizes
"We believe cloud is going to be a transformational engine that is driving growth for our customers,” he said.
“With today’s latest offerings, IBM is continuing to move its cloud strategy forward by helping put the tools for business innovation directly in the hands of leaders tasked with reshaping their organisation’s vision.”
The announcement comes amid numerous deals at IBM as it acquires new firms. Alongside the Xtify buy, it also picked up two firms from this side of the pond, with Milton Keynes-based Daeja and Irish data analytics firm The Now Factory also joining its ranks.
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