IBM President and CEO Ginni Rometty kicked off the company’s Think 2018 event with cloud and Watson news. This is a push to help companies migrate to the cloud — more specifically the IBM public cloud and private cloud platform — and use Watson’s embedded artificial intelligence (AI) capabilities.
The news includes cloud migration capabilities for its IBM Cloud Private platform to deploy and manage applications across multiple clouds. There is also a new Cloud Integration platform that provides a single control point for technologies including messaging, API management, app integration, high-speed file transfer, and secure gateway. The platform connects these technologies with data and apps across clouds.
Additionally, IBM’s cloud object storage now offers an integrated high-speed data upload option that allows rapid data transfer for huge amounts of data moving to and from the cloud.
“It’s a one-cloud architecture, it simplifies the journey to cloud, and it’s a consistent approach if you’re private cloud, public cloud, or on-premises,” Rometty said. “It’s AI-ready and it’s secure to the core.”
To the security piece, IBM announced new cloud security services that target cloud-native databases and containers, as well as new data encryption and key management capabilities for applications.
Watson, Coca-Cola, and Verizon
The AI piece, of course, is Watson, which Rometty said, “is now the platform for business.”
IBM today announced a partnership with Apple that integrated Core ML, Apple’s machine learning framework, with IBM Watson. This service allows enterprises to build machine learning apps on mobile devices and connect them to the IBM Cloud.
Coca-Cola is the first company to use the new service. It’s working on prototypes for field worker apps, including using visual recognition for problem identification, cognitive diagnosis, and augmented repair.
Additionally, Verizon Communications CEO Lowell McAdam joined Rometty on stage to discuss how its subsidiary Oath uses IBM Cloud. Oath is the umbrella company of Verizon’s digital content subdivisions, which include AOL and Yahoo and has 1.2 billion customers.
“We’re using Watson in our Oath call centers and wireline call centers,” McAdam said. “We did a deal with IBM where they took over all of our cloud capabilities. They’ve been able to upgrade those facilities, [and] apply those learnings to what we need inside our business.”