Innovation in cloud computing and digital business will be central to China's future information and communication technology (ICT) landscape, according to research and advisory firm Gartner, Inc. Gartner has identified five Cool Vendors that are delivering digital innovation for the way people work and how businesses structure themselves in China. CIOs, IT leaders and business leaders in China can find inspiration in the forward-looking approach of these five Cool Vendors.
Gartner’s Cool Vendors research is designed to highlight interesting, new and innovative vendors, products and services that organizations may wish to consider. Gartner defines a Cool Vendor as a small company offering a technology or service that is:
- Innovative — enables users to do things they couldn't do before.
- Impactful — has or will have a business impact; not just a matter of "technology for its own sake."
- Intriguing — gained analysts' interest or curiosity during the past six months or so.
According to Gartner, digital business is hastening new technology adoption in China and pushing enterprises to innovate, rethink IT infrastructure and place a renewed focus on the customer.
“The government's focus on the strategic development of cloud infrastructure is resulting in an explosion of diverse projects throughout the country, bringing many new players into cloud markets,” said Eileen He, research analyst at Gartner. “With the growth in the cloud, China has an increased need for infrastructure, data centers and cloud services. Meanwhile, the advent of digital business, stimulated by China's Internet and cloud industries, is expediting the fusion of cloud, mobile, social and information.”
Gartner's 2015 CIO survey results show that Chinese enterprise priorities are shifting toward cloud and digital business related technologies, with infrastructure and data center/cloud ranked as the top two technology priorities of China's CIOs.
Gartner is seeing growing innovation among China's vendors addressing these priorities and has identified five Cool Vendors that will disrupt the ICT market, while bringing benefits to enterprises.
Hangzhou-based Guahao.com provides a service aimed at improving the relationship between patients and doctors in a healthcare system facing imbalance and overstretched resources. Guahao.com is now the largest healthcare platform in China, connecting more than 900 hospitals. It makes money by selling insurance and offering travel arrangements to patients visiting other cities, as well as selling medicine to those with chronic diseases.
Nanjing-based StarrySky uses a crowdsourcing model to aggregate innovation from IT developers, programmers and system integrators to improve its enterprise mobility products and services, and expand its business in China.
TalkingData is a mobile big data service provider offering a solution for online/offline data collection, tracking, integration, unified management and activation by aggregating enterprises' traditional data and Internet/mobile data. Based in Beijing, it is one of the top two vendors in China providing mobile app attribution, tracking and analytics services for mobile developers.
Xiaoshouyi is a mobile-native, cloud-based CRM sales force automation software vendor based in Beijing, providing a unique China-centric sales management model. Its solution introduces consumer Internet experience into enterprise applications with good mobile-first sales force automation features and social collaboration functionalities.
5) Yunify Technologies (QingCloud)
Beijing-based Yunify Technologies is an infrastructure as a service (IaaS) provider in China that designs cloud services mainly for the enterprise market. It can support flexible billing options and deliver service resources in seconds via its self-service provisioning tools. It has a fully evolving services portfolio that addresses enterprise user requirements for high availability, performance and security when compared with most IaaS providers in China that target portfolios mainly for Internet and e-commerce workloads.
Since Gartner first introduced the Cool Vendors report in 2004, more than 2,200 Cool Vendors have been profiled globally. A few Cool Vendors have gone on to become IT mega vendors in their own right, while others have been acquired by mega vendors and other industry stalwarts; however, some have simply disappeared from the radar. While the 2015 collection of Cool Vendors is not exhaustive — not every company making waves is introduced — Gartner analysts have selected some companies to highlight based on their sense of how impactful they are today and can be in the near future.