The future of retail is still very much in flux -- and several major retailers are still stumbling through their digital transformations -- but Amazon on Friday released some stats to suggest it's not the problem. If anything, Amazon seems to be saying, it's helping small and medium-sized retailers thrive. Specifically, the e-commerce giant announced that in 2018, more than 50,000 SMBs exceeded $500,000 in sales in Amazon's stores worldwide. Nearly 200,000 surpassed $100,000 in sales, while the number of SMBs that surpassed $1 million in sales grew by 20 percent in 2018. On Prime Day, the company says, SMBs exceeded $1.5 billion in sales. The data comes on the heels of the National Retail Federation's annual conference in New York City, where it became clear the industry has yet to find its footing in the digital age. And last week, retail stocks took a hit in the market after Macy's reported weaker-than-expected holiday sales. Meanwhile, Microsoft Azure and Google Cloud are eagerly … [Read more...] about Amazon insists it’s helping small retailers grow
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Featured stories Best of CES 2019: Cool tech you can buy this year Game of Clouds: Lock-In is Coming Samsung's Galaxy S10 unveiling is February 20 and all it has to do is save the smartphone industry How to build a temporary green screen YouTube studio With retail technology at the forefront of the National Retail Federation's annual conference in New York City, it's worth paying attention to one huge cloud computing battle off to the side: Microsoft Azure vs. Google Cloud Platform. You didn't really think that retailers would be flocking to Amazon Web Services, did you? Of course, some retailers will play ball with AWS (and arguably should), but many companies will be looking to expand with Microsoft Azure and Google Cloud Platform. Simply put, retail-as-a-service is an open field opportunity for both Azure and Google Cloud. Rest assured that retail executives and technology decision-makers will get a hefty dose of both just as the retail sector struggles with … [Read more...] about At NRF 2019, Microsoft Azure and Google Cloud Platform court retailers wary of Amazon
The international cloud market is dominated by Amazon, Microsoft, and Google, while the e-retail space is usually controlled by Amazon or local parties. Cloud TV How business leaders are embracing cloud services The cloud is disrupting traditional operating models for IT departments and entire organizations. Read More But it's no secret that Chinese giant Alibaba wants a piece of both markets as well. Central Europe, which is still a cloud frontier, is its battleground of choice. On almost every list of leaders for public clouds, Amazon is in top spot, with Microsoft second, and Google third. The big exception to that hierarchy is in China and, by extension, Asia. In its home market of China, Alibaba reigns supreme and, according to figures from Synergy Research Group, that gives them a runners-up spot for the entire Asia and Pacific (APAC) region. The online retail market shows something similar, with either Amazon or a local party ahead of the pack, and Alibaba … [Read more...] about Is Poland the opening Alibaba needs to break grip of Amazon, Microsoft, Google on cloud?
Featured stories Alas, poor Lotus/IBM Notes, we knew ye well 2018 technology trends that will matter a decade from now Microsoft confirms that Chrome extensions will run on new Edge browser Apple's iPhone XR isn't selling? I went to Best Buy to find out Choosing the right public cloud provider is becoming an increasingly nuanced discussion that goes well beyond scale. We all know the large cloud players -- AWS, Google Cloud Platform, IBM Cloud and Microsoft Azure -- but stacking them up depends on your enterprise's needs. Here's a crack at stacking up the cloud providers and how Oracle and Alibaba are edging into the game based on annual run rates. First, a few things to note: This list of public cloud providers revolves around the service providers that offer software-, platform-, and infrastructure-as-a-service offerings. There are many more cloud providers that specialize in some part of the enterprise software stack. Increasingly, companies will combine the large … [Read more...] about Top cloud providers 2018: How AWS, Microsoft, Google, IBM, Oracle, Alibaba stack up
The second major version of Azure Data Factory, Microsoft's cloud service for ETL (Extract, Transform and Load), data prep and data movement, was released to general availability (GA) about two months ago. Cloud GAs come so fast and furious these days that it's easy to be jaded. But data integration is too important to overlook, and I wanted to examine the product more closely.Roughly thirteen years after its initial release, SQL Server Integration Services (SSIS) is still Microsoft's on-premises state of the art in ETL. It's old, and it's got tranches of incremental improvements in it that sometimes feel like layers of paint in a rental apartment. But it gets the job done, and reliably so.In the cloud, meanwhile, Microsoft's first release of Azure Data Factory (ADF) was, to put it charitably, a minimal viable product (MVP) release. Geared mostly to Azure data services and heavily reliant on a JSON-based, handed-coded approach that only a Microsoft Program Manager could love, ADF … [Read more...] about Azure Data Factory v2: Hands-on overview