Among leading Nigerian cloud players like MTN Cloud, RackCentre, Vodacom, and MainOne, the first to offer cloud gaming at scale will have the most important killer app in the industry. That app will seed profitable activity, pump bandwidth and accelerate value for the capital intensive business. Think of Netflix of African gaming! Previously, I made the case that cloud providers in Nigeria should invest in building amalgam of primitives, flavored for the Nigerian economy, for developers. The primitives must capture cloud gaming if they hope to thrive. Largely, the typical business processes from finance and back-office processing cannot deliver activity volume to make cloud business profitable in Nigeria as global players like Google, Microsoft and Amazon arrive. I described many of the challenges here, and those remain.
MainOne, MTN Cloud and RackCenter should invest efforts to build critical building blocks of computing elements, the primitives, in their data center businesses with specific focus on Nigeria and Africa. This will help them attract developers/partners to expand their operations. The promise is economies of scale through higher adoption of their platforms. As this adoption happens, these companies can enjoy massive “tax” which is simply collection of fees imposed on companies that depend on their platforms. Africa-themed primitives like procurement primitives, anti-corruption primitives, etc will be enablers for this differentiation in the market.
I think the cloud businesses here are largely IaaS and for keeping your platform connected to the internet, nothing much in terms of resources, which is actually where the global giants differentiate themselves. What exactly is the difference between RackCentre and MainOne cloud services for a developer? All of them look the same, other than different names with minor services to clients, but for developers, not much.
It is not every kind of business you copy, without improving on it, and somehow believe that everyone will be queuing up for your services.
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