New Zealand owned event ticketing company iTICKET has won a place on the 2014 Deloitte Technology Fast 500 Asia Pacific index, as one of the 500 fastest growing technology organisations across the region. An Auckland operated company, which specialises in online and mobile ticketing, Managing Director Reece Preston attributes the result to a constant commitment to innovation.
We picked New Zealand’s fire alert SMS data as our open dataset of the week two weeks ago because of its potential to create a real-time geographical alert system. It was with great excitement, then, that someone emailed us to say that such as a system has been built by private developers using this data. “There are a number of limitations with how the fire data feed is presented at present, but nevertheless we’ve managed to setup a free public fire alert service based off it,” explained Clint Van Marrewijk, Managing Director of ThunderMaps.
New Zealand is on the edge of a smartphone revolution being led from an epicentre in Asia. Kiwis are traditionally early adopters for technology and this country holds its own in smartphone penetration. About 70 per cent of mobile users have a smartphone that enables them to access the internet, which is broadly similar to comparable markets. The question is whether a small country such as New Zealand can take advantage of the shift to a world where internet communications are mostly on cellphones – a mobile-first world.
AUCKLAND, 19 November, 2014 – KiwiCover Insurance has become the first company in New Zealand to fully migrate its information technology platform to the new Microsoft Azure data centres in Australia. Announced in late October, the data centres in New South Wales and Victoria are the latest addition to Microsoft’s Azure cloud platform which now extends to 19 regions worldwide. Alan Kelly, Managing Director of Wellington-based KiwiCover Insurance, says that prior to the launch of the Australian Azure region, KiwiCover’s IT platform was hosted in the closest available data centre in Singapore.
Global ICT service and solutions provider Dimension Data has today launched New Zealand’s first global, enterprise-class cloud platform with local support in Auckland. The company’s Managed Cloud Platform (MCP) will be the 13th to be deployed worldwide, going live in December, and will include public, private and hybrid options. “Dimension Data has a strong presence in New Zealand, so we’re excited to be investing in a cloud solution that will really support Kiwi organisations,” says Bill Padfield, CEO, Dimension Data Asia Pacific, who is in Auckland for the launch.
New Zealand cloud software business Psoda has today expanded its footprint in Australia through a new partnership with integrated hosting and telecommunications company, Macquarie Telecom. Under the partnership, Psoda’s integrated project, program and portfolio management (PPM) software will be hosted at Macquarie Telecom’s Tier 3 data centre, Intellicentre 2 (IC2) in Sydney.
The New Zealand government has committed to help citizens find and reuse open data more easily, according to its Open Government Partnership action plan. The country formally became a member of the international community of 64 countries with the publication of its action plan last week. The action plan for the next two years highlights strategies that will improve transparency, accountability, participation and innovation.
Dell is set to open two new Australian datacentres as part of a Cloud expansion plan in partnership with Digital Realty and 6YS. The two new data centres will be located in Sydney and Melbourne, to add to its two existing data centres in Canberra and Brisbane. “As an end-to-end solutions provider, Dell is focused on meeting customer’s evolving needs including demand to have a data centre presence in local geographical proximity to customer operations,” according to a statement.
Google’s public domain name system (DNS) service went offline yesterday in South East Asia and Australia/New Zealand regions, affecting a large number of users in the area. Around 10pm AEST, users at the Whirlpool forum reported problems with reaching the Google DNS resolvers at the 220.127.116.11 and 18.104.22.168 Internet Protocol (IP) addresses and complained of experiencing packet loss. The outage was confirmed by Yunhong Gu, the team lead of Google’s public DNS, who said the service was off-air for around half an hour at 1100 hours UTC.
Dimension Data has appointed Jo Healey as New Zealand CEO to lead its local operations, effective 10 November 2014. With more than 20 years’ experience in the ICT industry, most recently as Managing Director of Fujitsu New Zealand, Healey takes the reins from Nick Halikias, Interim Chief Executive. Sunil Desai, Dimension Data Asia Pacific COO, says Healey’s proven track record will set Dimension Data in good stead as the business advances as a full spectrum IT service provider in New Zealand.
[Updated] Whistleblower Edward Snowden has accused New Zealand’s Prime Minister John Key of lying to the electorate about the existence of mass surveillance of citizens by the country’s main spy agency. Snowden today revealed in The Intercept that he “routinely came cross the communications of New Zealanders” while working with the US National Security Agency’s once secret XKEYSCORE mass surveillance tool, which it shares with the NZ Government Communications Security Bureau (GCSB). The NZ Government is actively concealing the full extent of internal surveillance, he claimed.
Christopher Thomas (pictured), Government Markets Manager, Esri, believes that departments need to move beyond transparency and accountability as drivers for Open Data initiatives – and start focusing on the benefits to citizens. “It takes resources for organisations to open up their data,” notes Thomas. “So the question we are beginning to be asked by governments is – ‘how is the public benefiting from Open Data?’”
New Zealand’s largest telco and internet service provider Spark suffered a three-day long outage over the weekend, as its Domain Name System (DNS) infrastructure became overwhelmed in what the company said was a “dynamic cyber attack”. The outage meant customers were unable to browse the web and utilise other services requiring name service resolution though Spark’s allocated DNS servers.
New Zealand’s main internet provider, Spark, suffered a major nationwide failure this weekend after a handful of users found themselves installing malware on their computers when they clicked on links promising nude photos of celebrities. On Aug. 31, a massive hack led to a leak of tons of nude photos of major celebrities. Jennifer Lawrence, Ariana Grande, and Kim Kardashian were all victims of the breach after their private images were taken out of their iCloud storage systems and posted to online communities within Reddit and 4chan.
The Australia Maritime Safety Authority (AMSA) and Maritime New Zealand (MNZ) have paired up to buy a the region’s first next-generation satellite-aided search and rescue (SAR) system that will speed up the location of vessels in distress. France’s Orolia Group owned subsidiary McMurdo Group Techno Sciences has won the €13 million (A$18.3 million), ten year deal [PDF]. The contract is as part of AMSA’s cooperation with its equivalent agency across the Tasman, Maritime New Zealand, and the Kiwis will chip in A$11.3 million for a ground station and operational costs.
The New Zealand Government has launched a new website, Govt.NZ, bringing together information and services from across agencies. “It’s a radical departure from ‘traditional’ service portals because we have been guided by what users tell us they want,” said Peter Dunne, Internal Affairs Minister, launching the website yesterday.
Instagram has launched an app designed after Snapchat. The online mobile photo and video sharing and social networking service released an app called Bolt on Tuesday. It’s Instagram’s first venture into speedy and ephemeral one-to-one video and photo-messaging. The company launched Bolt on Android and iOS in New Zealand, Singapore, and South Africa. Technology website TechCrunch said Instagram is testing the app in these English-speaking and Instagram-fluent countries before rolling it out in the United States.
Chief financial officers “hold the keys” to the next phase of cloud adoption, according to analyst house IDC, because they are among the last ones to move into cloud services. The analysts, who have collected their findings in the latest Asia Pacific cloud survey, say the CFO has an important role to play in terms of moving to a more optimised business model. In other words, it’s to ensure that the CFO sees cloud as a strategic differentiator for companies, as opposed to just being a cost-cutting exercise.
It might only make up 1.1 per cent of New Zealand’s population, but Papakura has raced ahead to become the first district to receive super-fast 4G mobile technology with 700MHz spectrum. Responsible for the Kiwi first was Vodafone, the first telecommunications company to roll out 4G in New Zealand. The telco giant is also the first to successfully trial rural 4G using 700MHz spectrum at Lake Brunner on the West Coast of the South Island last year.
New Zealand’s incumbent Telecom NZ is putting to use the 700MHz “digital dividend” spectrum it paid A$140 million for in a recent government auction by launching a regional 4G service. Telecom NZ said it will launch the service in rural Waikato, covering the town centres of Hamilton and Morrinsville as well as surrounding areas late next month.