Oracle Has Been Investing Heavily In AI For A Long Time: Amit Zavery, EVP and General Manager, Oracle Cloud Platform

Oracle has been building a cloud platform for many years and now it has formed quite a set of core services which allows the users to build applications, integrate and manage them. Over the last couple of years, they have added a lot of newer set of services based on the emerging technologies such as blockchain, Artificial Intelligence, and machine learning as a base foundational service, as well as digital assistants for interacting with applications using natural language and social media applications.

Amit Zavery, EVP and General Manager, Oracle Cloud Platform

Speaking very enthusiastically, Amit Zavery, EVP and General Manager of Oracle Cloud Platform, in a conversation with Sarabjeet Kaur from BWCIOWORLD, shared how Oracle has invested heavily in cloud products and they are also doing a lot of innovative investment as well, in the cloud, blockchain, AI and ML. This is a very comprehensive, open, and integrated set of services allowing anybody to really innovate and deliver next-generation applications. Excerpts:

BWCIOWORLD: In your customers specifically, where do you see more traction in emerging technologies such as blockchain, Artificial Intelligence, and machine learning?

Amit: It depends entirely on the industry model of an enterprise and different adoption patterns. If we speak of supply chain, healthcare, or even e-governance, then there is a lot of interest in blockchain. Speaking of a retailer doing service-based automation or HCM in HR, then a lot of focus is on digital assistants because he wants to interact and get data in a much more intuitive manner. AI and ML, on the other hand, are overly pervasive. It is used across all of our services and apps so many developers want to use that as a tool to build their app. They are used in pretty much every industry you can think of, but the other ones are more specific services used for particular use cases.  

BWCIOWORLD: What is Oracle’s AI strategy?

Amit: AI has been around for many years and we have been investing in it for quite a long time as well. Over the last few years, we have created AI based foundational services so that we can leverage that across all of our different products. We also bought a company called which provides the whole lifecycle management for a data scientist. We are going to provide that as a service running on top of a public cloud and the data scientist can now interact with an application developer to build an app using that information.

And then we, of course, have a lot of enterprise data in our apps. In our SaaS apps, we have all the information about a company, about users and transactions. Given that we have a lot of enterprise data, we can clearly do a great job by using that to improve the models for the company and provide a more predictive analysis as well as a lot of action-oriented information. We can also do proactive stuff such as alerting and security. Similarly, we are doing things in data preparation and big data for cleaning the volume of information, how to make it pertinent to what you are trying to do and get that delivered. Now we have AI-based applications in SaaS which are very specific by CRM, HCM, and supply chain which are using AI models for doing adaptive intelligent tasks. We also built Digital Assistant on AI so it does natural language processing. 

BWCIOWORLD: What is the security element that has been built in the Digital Assistant given the prodigious increase in data? There's a lot of information that gets accumulated which calls for better security.

Amit: We have been very secure and this is a good thing about how we run our products. It is all enterprise-grade where we as a user are no different than you logging-in to an app. So, we track your identity, we know who you are, and you only get to see what you are allowed to see irrespective of whichever channel you are coming from. If you are coming from the digital assistant, the web, or a mobile, you will be getting the same access. You will not be getting any extra access because it is your assistant. The data you can access is only based on what your roles are and what you are privileged for. 

BWCIOWORLD: What type of trend do you foresee when it comes to cloud adoption in India by 2020 and what sectors we should be looking forward to adopting the cloud? 

 Amit: Cloud adoption is becoming very common across every industry now, just the deployment is changing. The cloud has become so pervasive and common now that I don't see any differentiation as everybody is using it. I think the slowest might be the people who deal with regulatory stuff and have a lot of compliance issue as they might still do DevTest in the cloud and run production on-premise. But that's why we have something we call Cloud at Customer where you can run public cloud services in the data center of your choice.

BWCIOWORLD: Among other emerging markets, where do you place India for Oracle cloud?

Amit: India is probably one of the fastest growing areas for us for cloud adoption. All the industries are very active. The knowledge and experience are very good. There sure are some barriers to regulatory requirements but that is why we have a service which allows you to cater to that. A lot of our competition does not give you that choice, no other vendor provides you the ability to run the public cloud stuff very easily in your own datacenter. That is why we see a great adoption cycle in India because of some technology innovation and architectures that we have created allow the choice and flexibility so that customers in India can easily start their work in the public cloud. They can choose where they want to change the production system and they have the flexibility to move it back and forth. We try to keep the same transparent pricing, same model, same code as it is very seamless. So flexibility has been very good for a lot of our customers in India. 

While the government sector is huge for us in India and we have a lot of government customers, the biggest contributor to Oracle cloud's growth in India always has been financial services, telecommunication. A new trend that we are currently seeing is a lot of activity in retail now. That is new because they are all trying to use a lot of these new technologies for improving their e-commerce experience and to digitize their selling process now through building websites, supply chain, backend, and warehouse management.


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