Cloud storage has grown increasingly popular among businesses that need larger storage space and seeking an efficient off-site data backup solution. Huawei Technologies among others is one of the most recognized cloud service providers in Uganda.

Technology keeps evolving and with each update comes a better way to perform a task. One of the innovations is cloud computing technology, which allows individuals and businesses access to certain data or services in a location separate from end users.

Cloud storage has grown increasingly popular among businesses that need larger storage space and seeking an efficient off-site data backup solution. Huawei Technologies among others is one of the most recognized cloud service providers in Uganda.

In 2022, Mr Ethan Bampaire, the team lead at Klark.io, a product of Campaignity Technologies was among the selected beneficiaries to get Huawei’s cloud tech offer. The company creates content, social media advertising, gets leads, and builds AI technologies to convert sales for their business-to-business SME clients. “We do all this and more on our Klark platform which is hosted in the cloud,” he told the media recently. With hefty server costs reduced, Mr Bampaire says they can think about other things. “We are experimenting a bit more such as with Artificial Intelligence (AI) for optimised operations. We can also increase the random access memory (RAM) and disk space for optimal operation,” he said.

The company had also suffered downtime though not as severe as to cause client complaints. The Huawei cloud, however, is mainly appreciated by developers on the back end due to higher speeds, resulting in greater capacity, and a more flexible platform. “We delved into some manual processes such as Open AI which did not depend on a third party. With Huawei, they are faster which boosts our research and development arm,” Ethan added.

Early this year, Mr David Kombe of Bluss Tech, a web application building company was among the selected companies to get an offer from Huawei Cloud. Blue Streams Solution first interfaced with Huawei Technologies during the National ICT Job Fair 2022 that was at Makerere University through that interaction, they were able to be among the selected companies to get a good Huawei cloud offer. While the small-scale tech company was not unaware of the technology, it relied on other cloud providers whose costs were higher. Mr. Kombe said the technology company transferred all their services to Huawei servers which has allowed them to build capacity resulting in more clients.

Opportunities in cloud

Cloud computing helps businesses stay at the forefront of technology without making large investments in purchasing, maintaining, and servicing equipment. Cloud computing technology gives users access to storage, files, software, and servers through internet-connected devices which include computers, smartphones, tablets, and wearables. Some of the technologies offered include infrastructure as a service (IaaS), communication as a service (CaaS), platform as a service (PaaS), and software as a service (SaaS).

Users shift to cloud services

Small and Medium-sized Enterprises (SMEs) can benefit significantly from cloud technologies due to its various advantages.

Mr Elijah Mwesigwa, the IT and cloud solutions specialist at Huawei Technologies, said cloud is crucial because most SMEs have brilliant economy-advancing ideas but few resources to invest in their business.

“Building and maintaining a physical data centre is very costly and often relies on the capital expenditure model. This is where one buys servers based on estimates, which may be over, or underestimated. With cloud, that is dealt with as cloud payments are based on need. Therefore, cloud gives businesses more power to think about business advancement as it handles the operation end,” he said.

Cloud services allow SMEs to easily scale up or down their resources based on business needs. “This flexibility is particularly beneficial for businesses with fluctuating demands or growth,” Ms Nabukenya Beatrice, cloud services engineer at NITA-U stated.

  • Accessibility and mobility; Cloud services can be accessed from anywhere with an internet connection, enabling employees to work remotely or on the go. This enhances collaboration and improves productivity.
  • Automatic updates and maintenance; Cloud service providers handle system updates, security patches, and maintenance tasks.
  • Data backup and recovery; With a physical setting, an SME will need a systems administrator to create a recovery database that could also get corrupted. “Cloud providers offer robust data backup and recovery mechanisms, ensuring that critical business data is safe and can be restored in the event of a disaster or data loss,” Ms. Nabukenya Beatrice added.

Technological advancement

With recent technological advancements, the transport sector has the potential to witness significant breakthroughs that can revolutionize the way people move goods and services. With Uganda’s economy and population experiencing steady growth, the government has been pushed to invest significantly in new infrastructure, particularly roads to accelerate socio-economic development.

As the demand for efficient transportation solutions continues to rise, the need for digitization in Kampala’s transport sector has become increasingly evident. According to a recent article published by the New Vision, the fast-growing capital city has seen an influx of commuters and passengers relying on buses and commuter taxis for daily travel, making it imperative to adopt modern technologies to streamline operations and improve customer experience.

Digitalisation and the shift away from internal combustion engines emerge as two megatrends shaping the future of transportation and mobility. The driving licence, motor vehicle registration, and related services are all digitised.

In developed countries and dynamic emerging markets such as China, digitisation of the transport sector is in advanced stages.Digitalization is becoming increasingly crucial for modern modes of transport, enabling coordinated traffic management systems, remote ticketing, and booking for metro and long-haul services.

In the context of digitisation, tech startups such as Kacyber play a crucial role in streamlining and improving the efficiency of public transportation in Uganda. Kacyber offers digital ticketing solutions for buses and Uganda Railways Corporation commuter trains, helping to manage transactions and data storage for millions of passengers. The company’s exponential data growth underscores the need for cloud services and data collocation to support its expansion and ensure smooth operations.

Innocent Orikiriza, the founder and chief executive officer of Kacyber, recently revealed to New Vision that on average, a single bus in Uganda issues about 90 passenger tickets daily of which their tech support system is required to store this data for some time due to monetary regulations.

Therefore, with the increasing data generation and storage requirements, the need for cloud services has become eminent for Kacyber to flourish. However, being a tech startup, Kacyber faces financial constraints to afford such extensive storage facilities. Fortunately, they too received a proposal from Huawei, a technology company providing a timely and welcome solution. Huawei’s storage services will allow Kacyber to manage its data efficiently, ensuring a seamless and scalable business expansion. Digitisation not only streamlines operations, but also contributes to cost savings and accountability in the transport sector.

However, a national cloud infrastructure is necessary to support data storage and encourage widespread digitization across various industries and sectors for instance transport.