Finally, Facebook opens office in Manila

PhilippinesTech in Asia  — Facebook has opened its first office in the Philippines. Facebook’s vice president for Asia-Pacific Dan Neary announced the move on his Facebook page on Wednesday and during a press conference held in Manila on Thursday. The Philippines is clearly an important market for the social networking giant, he says. He counts around 49 million Filipino Facebook users – equivalent to 91 percent of the population with internet access.

Philippine Voter Data Hacked but Polls to Go Ahead

PhilippinesNY Times — MANILA, Philippines — The hacking of a Philippine election database may have exposed the personal information of all 55 million registered voters, but will not undermine May 9 national elections, officials said Friday, in the latest hacking scandal to hit the Southeast Asian nation.

Massive data breach exposes 55 million Philippine voters to risks

PhilippinesEnterprise Innovation — The Philippines’ 55 million voters are now susceptible to fraud and other risks after a massive data breach leaked the entire database of the Commission on Elections (Comelec) last month, security firm Trend Micro has warned. The defacement of the Comelec website by a hacker group called Anonymous Philippines happened at near midnight on March 27.

Alibaba Group to acquire controlling stake in Lazada

PhilippinesEnterprise Innovation — Alibaba Group will acquire a controlling stake in Southeast Asia’s leading e-commerce platform Lazada, following a total investment of approximately $1 billion. In a media release, Alibaba said the transaction consists of an investment of approximately $500 million in newly issued equity capital of Lazada, as well as the acquisition of new shares from certain shareholders.

Globe Business leads digital transformation in PH

PhilippinesInquirer Net — Globe Business, the enterprise information and communications technology (ICT) arm of Globe Telecom, has led the digital transformation of the country’s top enterprises in 2015 following the strong performance of its enterprise data and broadband segments. Full-year enterprise revenues in 2015 have grown by 12% versus previous year, while EBITDA increased by 15.7%, primarily driven by the growth in data business at 18%.

Globe says investment in SE Asia-US submarine cable link to exceed $80M

PhilippinesBusiness World — “If we include the Davao construction, that adds up to the investments. The $80 million pertains only to the SEA-US system per se,” Globe Senior Vice-President for Corporate Communications Yolanda C. Crisanto said in a mobile phone reply yesterday, but declined to disclose figures. The SEA-US submarine cable system will link Davao; Manado in Indonesia; Piti in Guam; Honolulu; and Los Angeles.

ePLDT Consolidates Position as Cloud Leader through its New Status as Consulting Partner with AWS

PhilippinesMartech Advisor — ePLDT, a subsidiary of Philippine Long Distance Telecom Company (PLDT), which provides digital solutions to leading telecom companies in Philippines, has achieved the status of Standard Consulting Partner in the Amazon Web Services Partner Network (AWS/APN). Being a Standard Consulting Partner of AWS, ePLDT allows firms to design, develop, manage, and migrate their applications and workloads on AWS.

Real-time data to aid traffic management in the Philippines

PhilippinesEnterprise Innovation — Real-time data can now help better manage traffic flows in the Philippines. The World Bank and Southeast Asian ride-hailing platform Grab launched on Tuesday a traffic management solution that would give traffic management agencies and city planners access to data that would aid in addressing not just traffic congestion but road safety challenges as well.

Philippine’s first microsatellite launched into space

PhilippinesEnterprise Innovation — The Philippines’ first microsatellite, Diwata-1, was launched into space on March 23 from the National Aeronautics and Space Administration in Camp Canaveral, Florida. Department of Science and Technology (DOST) Secretary Mario G. Montejo said that Diwata-1’s launch into space would enable the government to generate real-time data that will help the country improve its disaster-response mechanisms.

How Philippine Agencies can protect against cyber hackers

PhilippinesGov Insider — How can CIOs in the Philippines Government ensure that their agencies are safe from cyber attack? This key question will be answered at an upcoming Microsoft Summit held on 6 – 8 April in Bohol. Keshav Dhakad of the Digital Crimes Unit Division in Microsoft Asia will provide an insight into:

Manila’s ridesharing app U-Hop gets $7.4m funding for Asia rollout

PhilippinesTech in Asia — Manila-based U-Hop has closed seed investments worth a total of US$7.4 million, which it will use to roll out in major cities across Asia. The company has received US$2 million from a Philippine corporation with diversified interests, U-Hop’s founder Marvin Dela Cruz tells Tech in Asia.

Philippines’ mobile wallet providers announce interoperability

PhilippinesEnterprise Innovation — Mobile money interoperability in the Philippines took a step forward with the successful integration of the digital payments mobile app of Paymaya Philippines, the digital financial services arm of PLDT and Smart Communications, Inc. (Smart), with Globe Telecom’s mobile money service GCash. It is seen to boost the local digital commerce ecosystem.

IPC, CloudSigma partner to offer secure cloud services in Philippines

PhilippinesBusiness Mirror — CLOUD services and data-center provider IP Converge Data Services Inc. (IPC) has struck a partnership deal with global Infrastructure-as-a-Service provider CloudSigma, allowing the companies to jointly offer scalable and secure cloud resources in the Philippines. This marks CloudSigma’s first foray into the Asian market.

Philippine firms most aware about IoT security in SE Asia

PhilippinesEnterprise Innovation — Philippine firms are the most aware in Southeast Asia about security on the Internet of Things and its impact on their businesses, according to a survey by Intel Security. The survey was conducted in Singapore, Malaysia, Thailand, Indonesia and Philippines, and showcases widespread analysis from key players in IT organizations, from CEOs to developers to system administrators. There was a total of 1,953 respondents.

Indonesian virtual assistant YesBoss acquires Philippine startup

IndonesiaTech in Asia — Indonesian virtual assistant service YesBoss announced today that it has acquired HeyKuya, a Philippines-based startup, for an undisclosed amount. With this move, YesBoss has started regional expansion. HeyKuya is also a virtual personal assistant. Started in October last year, out of the Philippine company builder Machine Ventures. it’s run by a team of ten.

Telstra backs out of $1b Philippines wireless joint venture

PhilippinesZDNet — Telstra has cited the lack of an acceptable “risk-reward balance” as the reason for abandoning negotiations with Filipino giant San Miguel Corporation over a $1 billion equity investment in a wireless joint venture in the Philippines.

Telstra abandons San Miguel JV talks

PhilippinesSBS — Telstra has abandoned talks with food and beer giant San Miguel about setting up a third mobile operator in the Philippines, but vows to continue its pursuit of growth opportunities in Asia. Australia’s biggest phone and internet provider, which announced the talks in August, was looking to invest up to $US1 billion ($A1.33 billion) in the proposed wireless joint venture in the Philippines, which has one of the lowest mobile network speeds in the world.

Silicon Valley-based storage vendor to open Philippine office in April —

PhilippinesInteraksyon — An aggressive and up-and-coming storage firm based in Silicon Valley has revealed that it will inaugurate on April 15 its Philippine subsidiary – its second office in Asia Pacific after Singapore. Top regional executives from NimbleStorage, which is headquartered in San Jose, California, said in a press briefing on Tuesday, March 1, that the company has been processing its business registration documents in the last three months and is now actively looking for a workplace.

Southern Philippines Medical Center moves to the cloud

PhilippinesEnterprise Innovation — Southern Philippines Medical Center (SPMC) in Davao City is moving to the cloud. It recently acquired licenses for Microsoft Office 365, which combines the Microsoft Office desktop suite that their hospital executives, doctors, nurses, and employees have long been used to with cloud-based versions of the latest collaboration and communication tools.

Twitter launches first Asia Pacific #TwitterCity in the Philippines

PhilippinesMarketing Interactive — Twitter launched #TwitterCityPH in the Philippines, the first in Asia Pacific, at the Mind Museum in Taguig, Metro Manila. It is an experiential space showcasing Twitter as the live connection to culture and how Filipinos’ passions have been discovered, shared, and enjoyed more with tweets. Twitter is bullish on the Philippines, one of its fastest growing markets in 2015.

PLDT, Globe want competition probe over 700-MHz

PhilippinesTelecom Asia — Philippine operators PLDT and Globe are making another attempt to convince the government to reallocate a portion of the 700-MHz band to them, instead of leaving the entire band under the control of San Miguel Corporation (SMC). The operators have filed a request with the Philippine Competition Commission to probe SMC’s control over the band, arguing that it is anti-competitive, the Standard reported.

Philippine gov’t to develop budget, treasury management system with Globe

PhilippinesEnterprise Innovation — The Philippine government has announced a partnership with Innove Commununications, a wholly owned subsidiary of Globe Telecom to develop a Budget and Treasury Management System (BTMS) that will make the annual budgeting process more transparent. The project involves the implementation and operation of a fiscal management solution which will be used by the Department of Budget and Management, as well as the Bureau of Treasury and Commission on Audit.

Philippines startup PawnHero bags Hack Osaka pitch contest in Japan

PhilippinesDeal Street Asia — Entry from Philippines, fintech startup PawnHero, has bagged the gold prize at the Hack Osaka International Pitch Contest 2016 conducted by the Osaka Innovation Hub on Wednesday, beating nine other teams from Europe and Asia. It was a back-to-back top grand prize win for the Philippines, which also claimed the top slot in February 2015. Last year, startup mClinica, now an established mobile platform and online pharmacy network, bagged the award.

Philippines expands free public Wi-Fi project

PhilippinesEnterprise Innovation — The Philippines’ Free Wi-Fi Internet Access in Public Places introduced last year will be expanded to cover more areas in the country, especially in underserved areas. DOST-ICTO Executive Director Louis Casambre said the budget allocation for connectivity will be increased by around 50 percent.

‘White hat’ then, Red Hat now, from Manila

PhilippinesManila Times — “From white hat to Red Hat,” was the joke a senior executive of Red Hat quipped to Alessandro Perilli, after hearing excerpts from The Manila Times interview with him, to which Perilli answered back with a wink, and a seemingly knowing smile. In the vast world of technology, a “white hat” is an internet slang, which refers to an ethical computer hacker or a computer security expert who hacks with the intention of improving security systems.

Philippine telco giants lag behind peers in Asia Pacific

PhilippinesBusiness Mirror — DESPITE the headwinds that the telecommunications industry will face this year, the overall outlook for the sector remains bright. Consumers, in particular, will likely benefit from the possible entry of a new market player that promises to provide Internet services with better quality than the incumbents.

Philippines set to launch first micro-satellite into space

PhilippinesEnterprise Innovation — The Philippines’ first micro satellite, designed by Filipino scientists scientists and engineers training on satellite technology at Japan’s Tohoku and Hokkaido universities, is set to launch in the next two months. It is a landmark project of the Department of Science and Technology (DOST) through the Philippine Council for Industry, Energy and Emerging Technology Research and Development.

PH SMEs to drive market for sachet of IT services: IDC

PhilippinesEnterprise Innovation — By the end of 2016, enterprise “tingi pack” or sachets for cloud and IT services will thrive among SMEs, according to industry analyst IDC Philippines. “The enterprise tingi pack is going to be common in the consumption of IT products and services,” says Alon Anthony Rejano, analyst, IDC Philippines.

Application Services: In the heartbeat of today’s app driven world, from PH

PhilippinesManila Bulletin — Applications play a big role in today’s world. They continue to revolutionize business approach and strategies, empower businesses, drive customer engagement and actuate revenue. Evolving technologies may grow in popularity and give way to opportunities but a lot of challenges still exist. When it comes to managing applications today, the span of control is shifting, forcing organizations to think about how applications can be deployed in a manner that is flexible and profitable.

PLDT may sue regulator, San Miguel over 700-MHz

PhilippinesThe Philippines’ PLDT has stepped up its efforts to coerce the nation’s government and telecom regulator to assign it a portion of the 700-MHz band, threatening to take the regulator and current 700-MHz holder San Miguel to court. PLDT’s head of regulator affairs Ray Espinosa told Fairfax Media that the company plans to start directly petitioning president Benigno Aquino III to reassign the spectrum.