"Whenever we spun any new servers, Alibaba Cloud provided the complete hourly or monthly subscription costs – much like an e-commerce marketplace that’s very much part of their DNA. So, we were better able to work out our budgets and business plans upfront, well before we deployed the needed servers. This was something that only Alibaba Cloud was able to provide."
Roundesk, a product of Agentis Intelligence, is an enterprise-grade video conferencing platform. Its solutions include: Roundesk Cloud, a browser-based video conferencing product for distributed teams, allowing them to collaborate instantly using video, audio and screen sharing on any device; Roundesk On-Prem, a customized in-house conferencing system for enterprises; and Roundesk Townhall, which allows customers to host interactive webinars, town halls, events, classroom sessions and so on, for a large global audience. Building upon its success in the Singapore market, the company planned to roll out its solutions internationally.02
The COVID-19 pandemic hampered businesses in many ways, chief among them being how companies communicated with one another, as well as with customers and partners. Roundesk’s solutions were designed to help businesses overcome these new communication challenges. However, in tapping the growth opportunities, Roundesk also faced its own challenges such as bandwidth limitations of its existing server environment.
Rather than investing to expand its own server capacity, the company sought a more cost-effective option of scaling up on an on-demand basis. This was important as there were considerable uncertainties involved in the projected business growth, such as varying seasonal demands.03
Why Alibaba Cloud
Alibaba Cloud’s upfront transparency on costs was a plus point to Roundesk, as it considered the various solutions available from different service providers. Roundesk’s Chief Strategic Officer, Michael Lim said: “Whenever we spun any new servers, Alibaba Cloud provided the complete hourly or monthly subscription costs – much like an e-commerce marketplace that’s very much part of their DNA. So, we were better able to work out our budgets and business plans upfront, well before we deployed the needed servers. This was something that only Alibaba Cloud was able to provide.”
The strength of Alibaba Cloud’s global network – which includes 69 availability zones across 23 regions, as well as the largest data center network in the Asia Pacific region – was another advantage that Roundesk considered.
“As we expand internationally, we needed to adhere to localization and country regime requirements which Alibaba Cloud had a track record in,” Lim said. “We also needed to have total control and watch over every installation. This was a critical operational requirement for us to maintain service and performance quality,” he added.04
Roundesk implemented Alibaba Cloud’s Elastic Compute Service (ECS), AsparaDB for RDS MySQL and MongoDB solutions. Server configuration and management was greatly facilitated through Alibaba Cloud’s simplified, user-friendly interface.
In addition to addressing the compute and scalability challenges, Alibaba Cloud solutions also delivered several other advantages in terms of operational efficiency, reductions in cost and a platform for revenue generation.
Said Lim, “We are now able to rely on a minimal deployment of servers and scale according to usage, instead of paying for unnecessary bandwidth.”
• Ability to scale up bandwidth according to customer usage/seasonal spikes in demand.
• Global rollout of services well supported by Alibaba Cloud’s global infrastructure.
• Support and track record for new applications – e.g., telemedicine.
• Better cost management.
• Simplified, user-friendly interface for server configuration and management.05
As Roundesk focuses on rolling out its services to its regional and international customers – in as many as 26 new countries, it expects greater demands to be placed upon its network capacity. Lim said, “As we scale up quickly and aggressively, we expect Alibaba Cloud’s capabilities in tethering data and videoconferencing communications across its internal network, thus reducing latency of conferences hosted between various geographies to be very advantageous.”
Roundesk is also planning to adapt its solutions for more applications, notably telemedicine. Given Alibaba Cloud’s infrastructure HIPAA certification for medical industry customers, Roundesk expects the solutions to dovetail nicely with the rollout of solutions for this industry. “The ready certification immediately propels us ahead with the right credentials to satisfy customer requirements and expectations,” said Lim.
“Alibaba Cloud solution has become a key enabling and performance factor for our Roundesk platform,” he added.