Business Wire | September 27, 2023
DigitalOcean Holdings, Inc., the cloud for startups and SMBs, today announced the launch of DigitalOcean Managed Kafka, a new, fully managed data streaming platform as a service offering for Apache Kafka. DigitalOcean Managed Kafka helps small and medium-sized businesses across industries, including video streaming, the Internet of Things (IoT), data analytics, gaming, and eCommerce, access and process data streams in real time while eliminating the complexity associated with the Kafka administration. Through this offering and other enhancements across DigitalOcean’s portfolio, startups and tech entrepreneurs can more easily grow their businesses in the cloud.
“While Kafka is the gold standard for data streaming, it frequently presents technical challenges for smaller businesses with budget and resource limitations. We are excited to introduce a solution that makes this technology more accessible and meets DigitalOcean’s standard for simplicity,” said Megan Wood, Chief Strategy & Product Officer at DigitalOcean. “By reducing the burden of implementing a new platform, companies can shift their focus away from the complexity of managing their data streaming services and get back to building apps that differentiate their business.”
As businesses receive higher amounts of data inputs, the ability to rapidly capture and process this data becomes crucial. Thousands of companies, including over 80% of Fortune 100 companies, rely on Kafka to optimize their data streams and provide leaders with insights that inform decision-making. With DigitalOcean Managed Kafka, startups and SMBs can benefit from the ability to scale up and down clusters with ease while setting up alerts for proactive maintenance. Additionally, DigitalOcean customers can expect end-to-end security via private networking and data encryption along with cost-effective, predictable pricing starting at $147 for a three-node cluster.
“DigitalOcean's Managed Kafka offering has been a game-changer for us at Datacake,” said Lukas Klein, Chief Technical Officer at Datacake. “By taking care of the operational aspects of running our Kafka cluster, we have been able to focus our attention on what really matters – building a great product. With this new service, we were able to migrate seamlessly to an event-based architecture while maintaining the highest levels of operational security.”
Alongside DigitalOcean Managed Kafka, DigitalOcean has been making investments in its product and infrastructure offerings to provide peace of mind, increased productivity, and more affordable solutions to SMBs and startups. Some of those recent updates include:
GPUs with the acquisition of Paperspace-The computing power needed for training AI models and deploying at scale
Premium CPU-Optimized Droplets-Higher outbound network speeds, higher performance, and faster disk writes than standard Droplets
Enhanced memory and storage for Basic Premium Droplets-More flexibility with a wider choice of virtual machines
Low-cost support plans for every size of business-Eight-hour response times for all issues, regardless of severity
Object Storage in the Bangalore data center-Increased performance with compute and storage in one location
In addition, over the coming quarters, DigitalOcean will unveil the following enhancements and capabilities to continue to make DigitalOcean the cloud of choice for SMBs and startups:
More flexible storage offerings -Effortlessly accommodate dynamic storage requirements with Scalable Storage for Managed Databases, a cost-effective solution that helps businesses expand their data footprints with confidence
Faster, frequent, and comprehensive Backups -Ability to create daily Droplet backups that are differential, significantly reducing the time required to create them
Better performance for a range of products -Extending the premium variant to the General Purpose line of Droplets, providing newer generation CPUs, faster NVME drives, and up to 10 Gbps of outbound data transfer speeds making them ideal for running e-commerce, consumer, and SaaS apps
DigitalOcean simplifies cloud computing so builders and businesses can spend more time creating software that changes the world. With its mission-critical infrastructure and fully managed offerings, DigitalOcean helps developers at startups and small and medium-sized businesses (SMBs) rapidly build, deploy and scale, whether creating a digital presence or building digital products. DigitalOcean combines the power of simplicity, security, community and customer support so customers can spend less time managing their infrastructure and more time building innovative applications that drive business growth.
Cloudinary | September 22, 2023
Cloudinary, a renowned image and video platform, has recently unveiled an addition to its asset management suite with the launch of Cloudinary Nexus. This digital asset management (DAM) solution is explicitly tailored to meet the needs of small and medium-sized businesses (SMBs). Available immediately, Cloudinary Nexus offers both free and premium options. This AI-powered solution empowers SMBs and teams with enterprise-grade capabilities, making it effortless for them to connect, explore, and optimize their digital assets, all while streamlining their branding efforts with minimal time and complexity.
Drawing upon the strengths of Cloudinary's acclaimed DAM solution designed for enterprise clientele, known as Cloudinary Assets, Nexus equips smaller brands with the ability to automate essential yet time-consuming tasks associated with asset management. Nexus incorporates advanced AI functionalities and automation to handle tasks like metadata tagging and file format and size optimization. This ensures that teams can dedicate more of their time to more rewarding and high-impact activities. Nexus places significant emphasis on user-friendliness and accessibility, making it a valuable asset for a wide range of teams and individuals.
With features such as generative AI, Studio, collections, smart search, and auto-tagging, Nexus equips users with all the tools necessary to unlock the full potential of their images and videos. It enables users to:
Instantly Prepare Images and Videos: Users can effortlessly adapt designs, resize, and fine-tune assets in bulk within seconds. The inclusion of subject-aware AI enables the generation of new assets, while readily available creative presets facilitate the creation of multiple variations from a single master asset.
Transform User-Generated Content into Brand-Ready Assets: AI and automation simplify the task of moderating, managing, and approving user uploads, requiring minimal to no effort.
Facilitate Seamless and Effective Collaboration: By controlling file visibility through custom user roles and permissions, Nexus enhances productivity. Users can collaborate seamlessly with other contributors, teams, and partners, simplifying asset handovers.
Instantly Organize and Discover Assets: The automatic addition of tags and metadata, including colors, faces, and objects, improves asset discoverability. An AI-driven visual search feature provides highly accurate and personalized search results.
Effortless Setup: Nexus offers easy visual content import and integration with existing storage platforms like Google Drive and Dropbox, ensuring a smooth transition.
Cloudinary is a leading image and video technology platform that empowers the world's most engaging brands to deliver transformative visual experiences on a global scale. Consisting of a user base of over 1.5 million and serving more than 10,000 esteemed customers, including Bleacher Report, Apartment Therapy, Bombas, NBC, Grubhub, Mediavine, Paul Smith, Minted, and Peloton, Cloudinary is the trusted choice for bringing campaigns, applications, and websites to life. With unrivaled image and video APIs, supported by cutting-edge AI and patented technology, Cloudinary provides brands with a singular source of truth to effectively manage, transform, optimize, and seamlessly deliver visual experiences at scale.
Calix | September 18, 2023
Calix, Inc. has announced the launch of Calix SmartBiz in the United Kingdom (UK). This recent development empowers alternative service providers (altnets) to expand their markets with a tailored managed service explicitly designed to cater to the unique requirements of the 5.5 million small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) operating within the UK.
SmartBiz, on the Calix broadband platform, encompasses all the essential elements altnets need to foster SME growth within their communities. This includes managed Wi-Fi services (both indoor and outdoor), top-notch network security, business productivity applications, and high-speed internet access.
Historically, altnets lacked access to a broadband solution designed explicitly for SMEs, leaving them with the choice of repurposing residential products or downsizing complex and costly enterprise-grade solutions to accommodate the SME market. The introduction of SmartBiz provides altnets with a turnkey solution that not only enables the creation of additional revenue streams but also facilitates the expansion of their subscriber base, empowering them to compete more effectively within the fiercely competitive broadband markets.
SmartBiz comprises two main components: SmartBizWorx productivity software and the CommandWorx mobile app. CommandWorx is seamlessly integrated with the award-winning Calix Wi-Fi systems and Calix Support Cloud, allowing for self-service access to SmartBiz and its associated features. Small business owners can conveniently monitor and manage SmartBiz from any location using a user-friendly app tailored to their specific needs. Furthermore, a customizable customer Wi-Fi portal empowers business owners to offer secure and convenient internet access while enhancing brand loyalty.
Eoin Heaney, VP of international at Calix, stated:
SMEs underpin the UK economy. With an annual turnover of £1.4 trillion, they account for more than 30 percent of UK revenue and employ almost half the country's workforce.
[Source: Business Wire]
He also pointed out that small business owners face numerous challenges, including the search for suitable productivity solutions to support their growth. With SmartBiz, altnets can now offer SMEs the essential productivity capabilities they require, eliminating the need for dedicated IT staff or the typically associated hefty price tag.
Furthermore, Heaney highlighted that SmartBiz represents an opportunity for altnets to expand their business or explore new markets. He expressed enthusiasm about collaborating with innovative altnets such as Connexin, who provide distinctive managed services that empower their SME customers to focus on their core competency, which is running their own businesses.
SmartBiz also equips small business owners with:
Dedicated Networks for Enhanced Productivity:With network access control, SmartBiz offers pre-configured, dedicated primary, staff, point-of-sale, and customer networks. This ensures that every user enjoys appropriate access to the network resources they require, significantly improving role efficiency and overall productivity.
Robust Network-Level Security:To safeguard staff, customers, and critical business infrastructure from cyber threats, SmartBiz delivers robust security features alongside network-specific, customizable content restrictions.
Network Resilience:Recognizing that network outages can prove catastrophic for SMEs, SmartBiz provides automatic cellular failover, ensuring that SMEs can continue their operations uninterrupted, maintaining productivity levels, and preventing potential losses, which can be as high as £20,000 per hour of downtime.
Calix is a leading global provider of cloud and software platforms, systems, and services essential for the realization of the unified access network and intelligent premises of the future. With a forward-looking perspective, it empowers its customers to forge the networks of tomorrow by adopting a DevOps operating model, enabling them to optimize the subscriber experience through the strategic application of big data analytics. Furthermore, the company simplifies the intricacies of the smart home and business, converting them into lucrative avenues for generating new streams of revenue.
BILL | September 11, 2023
BILL, a leading in financial automation software provider for small and midsize businesses (SMBs), has announced the introduction of a new BILL Financial Operations Platform for SMBs, which integrates category-leading solutions across accounts receivable (AR), accounts payable (AP), and expense and spend management. With this new launch, BILL is delivering the most extensive capabilities for SMBs to enhance and manage cash flow within a single platform.
According to BILL's State of Finance Automation report for 2023, over 80% of respondents believe that automation is essential for managing their finances in order to achieve more strategic business objectives.
Bill payment is crucial, but they are also seeking more comprehensive and integrated solutions for managing more of their cash flow. The challenge is that, until recently, many SMBs were required to manage their incoming and outgoing cash flow across disparate systems and applications that are not integrated.
With the latest integrated financial operations platform by Bill, SMBs can acquire better real-time business insights into their cash flow. In addition, businesses can optimize their cash flow more effectively with a variety of payment and funding options, such as Pay By Card, international payments, virtual card, the BILL Divvy Corporate Card, and real-time payments like instant transfer.
The BILL’s New Financial Operations Platform includes:
BILL Accounts Payable automates the complete AP process to simplify invoice entry for SMBs by leveraging data capture and artificial intelligence to streamline approvals. It also offers flexible payment options, enhancing the efficiency and transparency of financial operations.
BILL Accounts Receivable automates AR through invoice generation, estimations, payment tracking, and collections, allowing SMBs to be paid quicker via ACH, credit, and debit cards.
BILL Spend & Expense is an all-inclusive expense and spend management solution that incorporates free software with corporate cards to offer SMBs customizable control and real-time visibility over their business finances. To simplify the customer experience, Divvy from BILL will now be known as BILL Spend & Expense. The features and capabilities of Divvy, such as setting budgets, monitoring expenses, and gaining access to the credit businesses need to expand, will remain unchanged.
Irana Wasti, Chief Product Officer at BILL, mentioned,
“By offering ongoing innovation in our platform, BILL continues to revolutionize the way SMBs and accountants use financial automation to succeed. We’ve pioneered a more integrated and exhaustive experience to provide SMBs the ability to enhance and manage their financial operations in one place – assisting them make the right financial decisions so their businesses can thrive.”
[Source – Business Wire]
BILL, headquartered in California, is the industry-leading financial operations platform for small and midsized businesses (SMBs). As an advocate for SMBs, the company is automating the future of finance so that businesses can flourish. Its integrated platform enables businesses to more effectively manage their payables, receivables, expenditures, and expenses. Hundreds of thousands of businesses rely on BILL's network of millions of members to pay or get paid faster. BILL is a trusted partner of prominent U.S. financial institutions, accounting software vendors, and accounting firms.