ETFs to Gain on Cloud Computing Growth Amid Coronavirus Crisis

The coronavirus pandemic is going from bad to worse, with more than 1,026,000 confirmed cases and above 53,000 casualties globally, per a Johns Hopkins University data.

The United States continues to top the chart with the highest number of coronavirus-infected cases. It recorded in excess of 245,500 cases with a death toll of more than 6,000. In order to combat the outbreak, President Trump has extended the lockdown until Apr 30. Notably, around 80% of Americans have been put under lockdown as coronavirus cases continue to spike in the United States. Top infectious diseases expert Dr. Anthony Fauci believes the United States will need a nationwide stay-at-home order to contain the spread of coronavirus.

In the current scenario, people have to maintain social distancing and work remotely. Resultantly, cloud computing is emerging as a key technology to fight the battle against coronavirus. Cloud computing and storage have empowered video conferencing, gaming, e-commerce shopping, remote project collaboration, online classes, editing, etc. It is supporting organizations in remotely processing a lot of information, developing and running key applications and services, and also helping employees across the world work together.

Highlighting the importance of cloud computing, Apurva Joshi, Digital Ocean’s vice president of product has said “cloud services are an unsung hero in enabling this massive, sudden shift to a remote-first workforce” (read: ETFs Set to Benefit from Social Distancing, Stay-At-Home).

Coronavirus Spurring Demand for Cloud Computing

Cloud computing is seeing increasing usage globally as it allows data interoperability in a scalable, cost-efficient way by, data collection, processing, analyzing, and sharing across platforms. Before the lockdown, companies were already discarding their own data centers to rent computing from Amazon AMZN, Microsoft MSFT and Google GOOGL. However, this shift is expected to speed up now, as millions of employees are working remotely from home.

In fact, Microsoft Teams currently have more than 44 million daily users, who engage in more than 900 million meeting and calling minutes per day. The company has also seen a mind-boggling 775% surge in its Cloud services in regions with lockdown orders. Google’s enterprise videoconferencing tool — Hangouts Meet — is seeing a rise in daily usage. It recently reported that Hangouts Meet registered a 60% increase in usage in the past couple of months.

Cisco CSCO has witnessed the number of meeting minutes more than doubling on its videoconferencing platform, Webex, in March compared to February. Moreover, the company has also witnessed its peak daily usage more than doubling to 4.2 million meetings. Cisco has also witnessed a sharp spike in demand for the collaboration platform. A rival to Cisco, Zoom Video Communications teleconferencing software has seen a rise in usage. Daily active user count skyrocketed 378% from a year earlier as of Mar 22, while monthly active users were up 186%, according to data from Apptopia. Another player, LogMeIn Inc. (LOGM) has witnessed around a 10 times rise in the usage of its videoconferencing and meeting tools from pre-outbreak levels earlier in 2020.

International Business Machines Corporation IBM is also seeing soaring demand for its cloud services and is also confident to meet those. In this regard, Jason McGee, IBM CTO for Cloud Platform has said that “we have the advantage because a lot of our services, they’re containerized, built in a cloud-native way. So we can move workloads around, can easily move workloads to where the capacity exists.”

Amazon’s cloud web hosting platform Amazon Web Services (AWS) has announced an initial $20 million to help accelerate research and development of diagnostic solutions, and the program is called AWS Diagnostic Development Initiative. To begin with, 35 research institutions around the world will take advantage of the AWS program. Alibaba Group Holding Limited’s BABA data intelligence arm, Alibaba Cloud, is aiming to provide medical workers across the world with advanced cloud-based apps to help battle the coronavirus outbreak.

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