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Alibaba Cloud to open datacentres in Thailand and South Korea

Chinese cloud supplier is expanding its regional datacentre footprint to Thailand and South Korea in 2022 alongside technology investments that include a custom Arm-based server chip

Alibaba Cloud is set to open new datacentres in Thailand and South Korea next year to cater to the cloud computing needs of businesses in the two countries.

The move follows aggressive plans by the Chinese cloud supplier to expand its regional footprint, which now covers markets such as Indonesia, Singapore, Malaysia and, more recently, the Philippines.

Alibaba Cloud said that with the South Korea datacentre, local businesses of all sizes will be able to deploy mission-critical workloads while enjoying more reliable and secure cloud services with lower latency.

In Thailand, the local facility will offer products and solutions that are in line with Thailand 4.0, the Thai government’s 20-year strategy to promote digital innovation and the development of sustainable technologies.

Selina Yuan, general manager of international business at Alibaba Cloud Intelligence, said that with insights gleaned from serving global customers in key industries such as retail, finance, logistics and manufacturing, the company is confident it will be able to support local customers in South Korea and Thailand to meet their digitisation needs.

To complement its infrastructure investment, Alibaba Cloud has also unveiled technologies, products and solutions to make public cloud services more accessible to enterprises and developers.

This includes its fourth-generation ApsaraCompute Shenlong architecture that touts container elasticity, storage, input/output (I/O) performance, latency and chip-level security hardening features.

Alibaba Cloud said the architecture now supports data-intensive applications, increasing storage input/output operations per second (IOPS) by 300% to three million IOPS. Storage and network I/O latencies have also decreased to as low as 30 and 16 microseconds, respectively.

To support enterprises’ hybrid cloud needs, Alibaba Cloud has also launched a new database platform called DBStack which can be deployed using Kubernetes, bringing cloud-native database systems to on-premise environments.

For companies that are not ready to migrate to a public cloud infrastructure, DBStack can be used to support cloud-native needs, such as using DBStack to manage several different database engines on a single on-premise platform.

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Another significant development from Alibaba Cloud comes in the form of its new custom developed processor, Yitian 710. The Arm-based processor is powered by 128 Arm cores with a top clock speed of 3.2GHz.

With 60 billion integrated transistors, Yitian 710 is also the first server processor that is compatible with the latest Armv9 architecture, which includes confidential computing features to shield portions of code and data from access or modification while in use, even from privileged software, by performing computation in a hardware-based secure environment.

With support for eight DDR5 memory channels and 96-lane PCI Express 5.0, Yitian 710 will be used to power Alibaba Cloud’s new line of proprietary servers, dubbed Panjiu.

“Customising our own server chips is consistent with our ongoing efforts toward boosting our computing capabilities with better performance and improved energy efficiency,” said Jeff Zhang, president of Alibaba Cloud Intelligence and head of Alibaba’s Damo research arm.

“We plan to use the chips to support current and future businesses across the Alibaba Group ecosystem. We will also offer our clients next-generation computing services powered by the new chip-powered servers in the near future.”

“Together with our global partners including Intel, Nvidia, AMD and Arm, we will continue to innovate our compute infrastructure and offer diverse computing services for our global customers.”

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