Digital Edge Accelerates Growth in South East Asia with Expansion into the Philippines

Digital Edge (Singapore) Holdings Pte. Ltd. established a joint venture in the Philippines with the Threadborne Group, a local family office focused on technology and real estate. The JV will construct and operate a 10MW data center in Manila, with a capital commitment in excess of USD100 million collectively from both parties. The new data center will be based on Digital Edge’s next-generation architecture and operated under the Digital Edge brand name.

Already under construction, the Manila data center is slated to be completed in the fourth quarter of 2022. It will be the largest operational carrier-neutral data center in the Philippines. The facility also aims to be the most advanced facility in the market, in terms of energy and water efficiency, with an expected annualized PUE of 1.193 at optimal operating temperature and WUE of 1.355.  The facility will allow Digital Edge to offer flexible, high-quality colocation and interconnection services to both local and international customers in the Greater Manila region. The low PUE and WUE make the facility uniquely suitable in the market for cloud and other high power density colocation applications.

According to Structure Research, the Philippines’s colocation market is expected to become a US$313M market by 2026, growing at a CAGR of 22% between 2021 and 2026. Jabez Tan, Head of Research at Structure Research, notes that “Alibaba Cloud is currently the first and only hyper-scale cloud platform to announce a cloud region deployment in Manila, Philippines, and we believe more cloud region announcements will soon follow in the next two years driven by the overall decentralization of hyper-scale cloud platforms into more distributed and in-country data center architectures to cater for the increasing performance requirements and data privacy regulations.

“The Philippines is an underserved market with huge demand for data center capacity and, together with the Threadborne Group, we intend to be at the forefront of developing the critical data center infrastructure for this market,” said Samuel Lee, Chief Executive Officer of Digital Edge. “The Threadborne Group’s principals are experienced real estate developers with a proven track record and we are very pleased to have joined forces with them to undertake this important initiative. This venture is another step forward in the Company’s ambition to transform Asia’s digital infrastructure by building and operating the most energy-efficient and connectivity-rich data centers in key emerging markets.”

“Digital Edge’s knowledge and experience in designing, constructing, and operating data centers combined with our local real estate and customer knowledge, has created a solid foundation on which to grow this partnership,” said Raymond Rufino, Principal for Investments and Real Estate of the Threadborne Group. “Digital Edge shares our strong conviction for this market and in the importance of setting robust, long-term ESG goals. We are already receiving very positive feedback from a number of potential customers and are confident that this is just the beginning!”

“We are very excited about the energy and water efficiency achieved in the design of the Digital Edge Manila data center. Given Manila’s hot and humid climate, it is extremely difficult to achieve an annualized PUE of 1.193 at the optimal operating temperature, but the team has been able to achieve an impressive result,” said Jay Park, Chief Development Officer of Digital Edge. “The WUE of 1.355 is also significant in that it uses less than a quarter of the water needed for cooling when compared to traditional-style cooling tower type setups. These are industry-leading numbers. We will be seeking LEED Gold certification, EDGE certification, and participating as an early pilot partner for BERDE (Philippines Local Green Building Certification). This data center will most certainly put the Philippines into the league of having one of the most advanced data centers in Asia.”

RSG enters PH esports scene to delight local fans

RSG, the premier Singapore-based Southeast Asian professional esports organization, officially entered the Philippines esports scene, the latest of its overseas markets.

Recently, it was announced that the very first RSG PH professional esports team will make its debut in the upcoming Mobile Legends Professional League Philippines Season 8.

The team also recruited Elyson Edouard “GHOST Wrecker” Caranza, one of the country’s most popular streamers along with the team captain, Kenneth Jiane “Kenji” Villa.

Meanwhile, Brian “Panda” Lim, who led the Philippines to a Gold Medal win at the 30th SEA Games, will guide the team as its coach. Esports veteran Richardson “RJ” Jacinto will serve as the RSG PH Country Manager.

The team line-up will also comprise of:
● Arvie “Aqua” Calderon
● Dexter “Exort” Martinez
● Earvin John “Heath” Esperanza
● Eman “Emann” Sangco
● Joshwell Christian “Iy4knu” Manaog
● Jonard Cedrix “Demonkite” Caranto
● Nathanael “Nathzz” Estrologo

“With the second largest population in Southeast Asia, Philippines has a highly enthusiastic esports community that has grown rapidly in recent years. As the esports scene gathers momentum in the region, RSG is proud to be one of the first few regional esports organizations to expand our presence and support the development of the local esports industry,” said Founder and CEO of RSG, Jayf Soh.

“We hope to bring to the fans here our experience in developing esports champions, drive innovation in the way we create and engage fans, and last but not least, the trademark RSG spirit of relentlessly pursuing excellence. We will be working together with stakeholders and fans to educate the masses about esports, and contribute to a more robust ecosystem as we aspire to be the leading esports organization here,” he added.

RSG also unveiled to include developing professional esports teams and talent, which will support RSG’s strategy to grow the local esports talent pool and raise the bar in engaging the gaming community and improving fan experiences.

They also plan to expand and include other game titles across console, PC and mobile platforms, support local content creators and talent, and explore long-term collaborations to raise mass awareness and interest on esports.

Founded in 2017, RSG operates across Southeast Asia to engage the gaming audience through esports teams and content creators. The company’s premier esports teams specialise in leading game titles such as Mobile Legends: Bang Bang (MLBB), PUBG Mobile, Call of Duty and Warcraft, and have participated in over 200 tournaments collectively.

Building on its presence in Singapore, Malaysia, Vietnam, and Philippines, RSG will continue its growth strategy through regional expansion efforts into key Southeast Asian markets. The esports organisation also plans to compete in more games and reach 150 million gaming audience in Southeast Asia by the end of 2021.

Saying goodbye to Twitter Fleets

Photo by Benjamin Dada on Unsplash

After eight months since its roll out, Twitter’s ephemeral Fleets feature now bids its goodbye starting August 3.

The company announced this move in a blog post last July 14, stating that they haven’t seen an increase in the number of new people using Fleets.

The said feature was created to help people share their fleeting thoughts, in a lower-pressure way compared to declaring it out loud using Tweets.

The company also shared that they hoped Fleets would help people be more comfortable in joining conversations on Twitter, but those who are using Fleets were already Tweeting.

Meanwhile, people will still see icons of accounts holding live Spaces at the top of the timeline, where Fleets were originally placed.

Despite the lukewarm turnout, Twitter promised to continue evolving and learning to serve the publication.

For the full blog post, please click here.

Smart 5G powers Mountain Telemedicine, bringing help and hope

PLDT wireless unit Smart Communications Inc. (Smart) has fired up more 5G sites across the country.

There are now more than 3,000 sites across the country, enabling communities to experience Smart 5G’s super-fast data service. One of these is Barangay Linut-od, a mountain barangay in Argao in the province of Cebu. The availability of 5G in the area has enabled remote patient health consultation—or what we now know as “telemedicine”.

Mario G. Tamayo, Head of Technology at PLDT and Smart, emphasized the importance of expanding the network to support far-flung communities, even with the hurdles posed by the pandemic. “Rolling out the network in an archipelago and the countryside presents various unique challenges. But we are committed to expanding our network and making sure our technology reaches all communities and have the best customer experience with Smart.”

Smart powers Mountain Telemedicine

Telemedicine offers a low-cost and more convenient means of delivering healthcare services that can support mountain communities and reach more residents living in far-flung areas like Linut-od.

Among the beneficiaries of mountain telemedicine is a 51-year-old patient in Linut-od, Elena Camson, who was diagnosed with End-Stage Renal Disease in 2018. Before the firing up of Smart’s cell site in the barangay, Elena had to travel to the town proper for her medical consultations. “When there was still no network signal here, we had to go to the city for check-ups. We used to walk from our house to another barangay where we can ride jeepneys to reach the city,” says Elena.

Argao’s community doctor, Dr. Stanley Caminero operates two charity clinics in Argao: one in the municipality’s town proper and one in barangay Linut-od. With telco facilities enhancing the delivery of medical services, efforts at promoting healthcare can now reach longer distances and underserved communities.

“A strong network signal is a huge help in our advocacy to treat patients, which is made possible by telemedicine. Patients can directly contact us whenever they feel sick or if they are in need of consultation, especially if they cannot immediately proceed to the city hospital,” shared Dr. Caminero.

Since the Smart cell site in Linut-od, Argao was fired up in 2019, the delivery of essential health services in the barangay has also improved. Cristina Alberca, Barangay Health Worker for 3 years, has also felt the difference and the massive improvement in the mobilization of their services since the availability of signal and connectivity in the barangay.

“Back then, we had to tread our way to the different puroks or districts because we did not have direct access to them. With Smart’s fast connectivity, our job has been made easy. We’ve created several group chats via online multi-media platforms where we can directly send announcements, updates, and schedules in order to also prevent crowding,” shared Alberca. Alberca and other barangay health workers have utilized technology and connectivity in ensuring the timely delivery of quality healthcare in the mountain barangay.

Dr. Caminero underscores the value of fast and reliable connectivity in enabling a more inclusive healthcare service, especially in unserved and underserved communities, “Through Smart’s 5G signal, we can assure quality service and accurate diagnoses to our patients. I hope for the continuous connectivity advancement in our mountain barangays, especially those areas that are still not reached by network providers. It can greatly aid us, especially in treating patients living in the mountains with little access to quality healthcare service.”

Smart’s 5G nationwide rollout, strengthening its leadership

Launched last year, Smart ‘s 5G service was quickly expanded to cover key cities in Visayas and Mindanao, strengthening the company’s commitment to bring the best digital technologies closer to more Filipinos across the country. This advancement has benefitted several communities, including mountain barangays in Argao.

Continuing this big push for 5G in the country, Smart also recently expanded its Unli 5G offer to cover all Smart 5G sites nationwide–an unprecedented move that enables more Filipinos to enjoy Smart’s most powerful offer on its fastest technology yet.

5G, the latest upgrade in wireless communications, offers fiber-like data speeds on mobile and ultra-low latency, enabling excellent customer experience in uploading and downloading large files, uninterrupted playing of online games, seamless streaming of high-resolution videos, and next-level audio-video call experience which aids mountain telemedicine, among others.

These initiatives are part of PLDT and Smart’s continuous expansion of their fully integrated network, the largest in the country. Smart’s mobile network, which serves 96% of the population from Batanes to Tawi-Tawi, has also been recognized as the fastest mobile network in the country by third-party analytics firms including Ookla and Opensignal. Enabling Smart’s 5G network is PLDT’s fiber infrastructure, the country’s most extensive at over 478,000 kilometers as of end-March 2021.

PH ranks 6th on Twitter gaming and esports insights for H1 2021

Cover photo by Alex Haney on Unsplash

Gamers around the world come to Twitter to discuss all of the latest happenings and trends. In the Philippines, gamers definitely levelled up their voices and excitement on Twitter’s gaming scene in the first half of 2021. From the 9th place in 2020, PH now ranks up to 6th surpassing India, France, and the United Kingdom.

Filipinos sure know what are the latest and trending games, expressing their excitement and experience through Tweets. But of course, mainstay games remain in the hearts and discussion of Filipinos and around the globe.

Here are the most talked about games among Filipinos on Twitter in the first half of 2021.

A lot has happened in the esports scene, even though only half the year has passed. Filipino gamers showed their support for their favorite teams and players and connected with the source themselves on Twitter.

Here are the most talked about esports Team among Filipinos on Twitter in the first half of 2021.

Even though the year is almost halfway over, there’s still plenty to look forward to in the second half of the year. Be sure to stay tuned for even more gaming events like Gamescom & The Game Awards, along with plenty of esports content from Call of Duty League, League of Legends Esports, Overwatch League, and the VALORANT Champions Tour among others.

#TWEETYOURMUSIC AND CELEBRATE WORLD MUSIC DAY

To celebrate this year’s World Music Day, Twitter launched the #TweetYourMusic campaign to highlight local musicians across Southeast Asia.

#TweetYourMusic features local musicians and fans that support them with a series of fun and creative activities on Twitter such as daily music trivia through Twitter Polls and live discussion and mini-concert with local musicians on Twitter Spaces

Here’s the list of Twitter Spaces sessions in the Philippines:

UNBOXING: NCT DREAM WE BOOM – WE VERSION

I’m excited to share with you that I finally have a copy of We Boom by NCT DREAM, an album I kept thinking about for months 😂

Since this was released last July 2019, it was quite difficult to look for stocks online. If there were any, it’s either expensive or the unsealed copies. The price of sealed albums can range from P900 to P1,200 for a copy sans shipping fee.

Salamat Shopee

I’m glad a K-Pop shop in Shopee joined the 6.6 sale because I was able to buy my copy (the We version) for only P800 including shipping. Here’s what happened: The item is discounted to around P990; to make the price lower, I used my Shopee coins and used free shipping and cashback vouchers. Now, the album is finally up for grabs AND within my budget.

DREAM In Suits

Anyway, the reason why I love We Boom is because it’s my fave Na Jaemin era—everything about him during this promotion is glorious, from his hair to his rapping parts in 119 😭. Also, there are 2 versions of the album (We and Boom) but I chose the We version for the exquisite and classy Nana photos.

They all look amazing in suits and there’s a lot of elegant elements even in the Boom Music video (see MV below). Moreover, this is very special for me because NCT DREAM won a Bonsang in the 34th Golden Disc Awards for WE BOOM and it is their first release to receive a Platinum certificate by KOMCA. It might not be everyone’s cup of tea in terms of discography, but I love each songs in this mini album.

Here’s the video of me unboxing the package. I checked it out June 6 and received it right away last June 11. FAST ETA + MEGA DISCOUNTS = BEST DEAL!

The pulls

I got Renjun beret ❤️

I also got Jeno scratch card and Jisung circle card. If you’ve seen my previous Hot Sauce Photobook and Jewel case unboxing videos, you will see that Jeno and Jisung has been my constant pulls recently. The album also comes with a leaflet to certify your purchase in the Hanteo charts using the Whosfan app.

That’s all for this unboxing story. If you’re interested, you can check out We Boom on Spotify or watch the MV on YouTube.

UNBOXING: NCT DREAM HOT SAUCE JEWEL CASE VER.

Annyeong! I am back with an unboxing video—this time, it’s for Hot Sauce Jewel version!

ICYMI: Here’s my unboxing of the Photobook version

I bought this from an account selling on-hand jewel case albums. The albums were opened prior to delivery just to check the inclusions and for photo reference. Anyway, my bias is Na Jaemin and it’s quite difficult to secure or even reserve a slot for any Jaem-merch so I hurriedly took my chance when I saw the seller had one available.

Also, this does not come with any freebies, but that’s alright with me. It’s on-hand and bought under fast ETA so I already consider myself lucky with this purchase.

The unboxing video

I’m still a newbie in unboxing so you will see my flimsy handwork in the video. I must say, I was very cautious about not breaking the casing since it is fragile. For a moment, I also hesitated if I am yanking out the contents properly and tried my best not to break or tear anything.

See my pulls

Since I bought it already knowing what’s inside, much of my surprise and excitement is on the realization that the album is finally and literally within my reach hahaha

Jisung is my favorite next to Jaemin, so I’m happy I got his PC ❤️ Uri Jisungie, mwoya mwoya~

Nana and Jisungie

On the packaging

I think the outer foil packaging is unique. It feels like you are buying a pack of chips, but a more expensive one. It’s opening flap has a strong adhesive as well so you’d know if the package has been opened or not.

The downside to this is…I don’t think it’s enough if what’s inside is a very fragile material. Aesthetic-wise, it’s cute…but it kind of lacks on functionality. If not handled properly, the case inside might get scratches or even cracks.

Not sure if it is noticeable in the video but there’s a faint scratch on my jewel case. I inspected the flaw closely but all surfaces of the area were smooth. Not sure if this is a factory defect but there are angles wherein it is obvious. I also notified the seller about it but I did not ask for replacement or refund—I am good with it as long as everything is working, complete, and intact. 🙂

First-time to…

The purchase comes with a card with instructions on how to authenticate the album and make it counted in the Hanteo charts—which is my first time ever so I was hella confused and excited during the whole authentication process.

Another first for me is trying the SM AR app. The jewel case album comes with a PC with special AR clip and it was totally cool when I scanned my PC and then suddenly, a video of moving Jaemin popped out!

I hope you enjoyed reading this as much I enjoyed making this content. We have more albums incoming so stay tuned 😉

88Rising drops California MV

Ahead of the release of Head In The Clouds 3, 88Rising artists Rich Brian, NIKI, and the new member of the team, Warren Hue, released the music video for their newest song “California”.

The song depicts how the artists made it big in California, establishing their music careers in the famed city and the high and lows of getting and making it there.

Not to mention, the trio all came from Indonesia and the music video is also like a homage to their roots featuring local cuisine and snacks, traditional games, and the story of Asian childhood, family, and culture overseas.

The music video officially dropped May 26, the same day with their Asia Rising Together benefit online live stream concert. As of June 2, the event has raised a total of USD10,552.00 to support the Asian Mental Health Collective.

As for the Head In The Clouds 3 compilation album, full details are not disclosed yet but expect another awesome lineup for the project.

Watch the MV here

Cover photo taken from NIKI’s Twitter Header

A quick guide to apps every K-Pop fan needs to vote on music shows

Welcome to the wonderful world of K-Pop!

Aside from the fancy outfits, stellar choreography, and catchy singles, it is a norm in K-Pop promotions to appear on music shows. This activity is one of the avenues for artists to create exposure, perform for fans, and reach the public aside from concerts and events.

These shows also rank which is the “hottest” song of the week based on various scoring systems or criteria. Each week, there will be only one artist or group who can win a much-coveted trophy. Most of the fandoms also target to hit triple crowns or more, showing how fans are devoted to their faves (personal note: and how the field can be quite competitive).

If you are new to K-Pop music voting, an international fan, or are already a fan but just got interested in the whole voting process, here are some of the apps you can download to get your votes counted.

STARPASS

Use it to vote on: The Show and Inkigayo (SBS)
Pre-voting and live voting is available for The Show (airs every Tuesday)
Live voting is available for Inkigayo (airs every Sunday)

Other voting categories/options:

  • Monthly Individual Ranking – Vote for your idol or make donations under their name
  • Battle Ranking – Make donations under their name for anniversaries or birthday celebrations
  • Various Ranking – topics vary monthly

IDOLCHAMP

Use it to vote on: Show Champion (MBC)
Pre-voting is available (airs every Wednesday)

Other voting categories/options:

  • IDOLCHAMP CHART – Donate “chamsim” or hearts to your bias group. When your group wins the Monthly Chart, they will be rewarded with a promotion video to be aired on MBC channels
  • Special ads – fans can cast their vote on special ads projects (subway ad, bus stop ads, etc) to promote new album releases. K-Pop artist’s birthday, or artist debut anniversary
  • PR Voting – this voting category allows the winner idol in the poll to be featured in an online news article

MWAVE

Use it to vote on: M Countdown
Pre-voting is available (airs every Thursday)

Other voting categories/options:

  • Vote & Rank K-POP voting – topic varies
  • Official voting for Mnet Asian Music Awards (MAMA)

MUBEAT

Use it to vote on: Show! Music Core
Pre-voting is available (airs every Saturday)

Other voting categories/options:

  • Mubeat voting categories – varies monthly, one of the rewards is a spot ad on The Show TV
  • Fandom ads – fandom support projects for artist anniversaries, can be subway ads, video ads, etc.

To know more about the shows’ criteria, this article from Soompi has a detailed breakdown from broadcast scores to SNS.

It’s never too late to join in the fun! Download these apps to vote for your faves and see them get wins and encores on music shows 😉

Photo by Joel Muniz on Unsplash