Hangzhou, China — Royal Philips (NYSE: PHG, AEX: PHIA) and Alibaba Group (NYSE:BABA) today announced that both companies have entered into a framework agreement for IT-infrastructure services in China. Through its Alibaba Cloud Computing (AliCloud) division, Alibaba Group will support Philips with cloud computing services to store and process the data of certain of Philips’ new connected products and solutions in China enabled by Philips’ HealthSuite Digital Platform. The Smart Air Purifier launched in China today is Philips’ first connected product supported by Alibaba’s cloud computing services.
People living in megacities, as well as people affected by allergies or respiratory conditions, increasingly want to be reassured and in control of the quality of the air they breathe in their homes. With the Philips Smart Air Purifier and the associated mobile application, which is supported by Alibaba’s powerful cloud services, people can monitor the reported city air quality index data, including the PM2.5 index, as well as the air quality in their homes. This enables users – while not being at home - to operate the Smart Air Purifier in real-time, from anywhere and at any time. Additionally, the connected air purifier can send helpful alerts to the users’ mobile device, when the indoor air quality reaches unhealthy levels or when the filter needs replacement, so appropriate action can be taken.
The new framework agreement marks an important step in the collaboration between the two companies. Under the terms of the agreement, AliCloud will support Philips with IT-infrastructure services including cloud servers, cloud databases, cloud storage, cloud security and data processing. This will help to fulfill Philips’ needs for its cloud-based connected consumer products and solutions in China enabled by Philips’ HealthSuite Digital Platform. This agreement represents Philips’ first deployment of its HealthSuite Digital Platform into a local cloud outside of Europe and the US.
“It is one of Philips’ strategic priorities in China to deliver meaningful innovation in the areas of mobile connectivity, cloud computing and big data technologies to help China better address the challenges of its accelerating urbanization and aging population,” said Patrick Kung, Member of the Executive Committee of Royal Philips and CEO of Greater China. “China is the second largest market and a home market for Philips globally, and we have built a very strong organization in the country. It is an important component of our digital innovation strategy to connect our cloud-based digital platform with the AliCloud ecosystem, which is part of the Alibaba Group. We will leverage this ecosystem to accelerate the development of connected HealthTech and Lighting products and solutions in China.”
“Cloud computing and big data will change the world,” said Wang Jian, Chief Technology Officer of Alibaba Group. “Our future economy will depend on cloud computing as do traditional industries on electricity. As the core technological platform for Alibaba Group, AliCloud operates its proprietary Apsara cluster, which can be scaled up to 5,000 servers. It is a computing platform that serves our global customers and partners with actionable data. When integrated with cloud computing - the new era’s ‘electricity’ - Philips’ connected products will truly enable people to enjoy a more convenient and smarter lifestyle brought by the new technologies.”
Building on the strong foundation of its combined Healthcare and Consumer Lifestyle business, Philips will be focusing on the convergence of professional health care and consumer end-markets across the health continuum, from healthy living and prevention, to diagnosis, treatment, recovery and home care. This HealthTech opportunity is illustrated by the rising engagement of consumers to proactively monitor and manage their health, and by increasing pressures on the healthcare system to create new models of care along the health continuum to deliver better and affordable care. The integration of the data from Philips’ connected products on the HealthSuite Digital Platform offers Philips and its partners opportunities to innovate in an increasingly connected world, where societies are looking for more effective and lower cost health solutions.
In lighting, accelerating urbanization is not only driving the demand for more lighting, but also for more energy-efficient lighting solutions. Simply switching to LED street lighting can reduce energy consumption by as much as 60% for some applications, but when combined with sensors, controls and software, a connected lighting system can provide an additional 20% of energy savings. As the market leader in LED connected lighting systems and services, Philips has already introduced intelligent street lighting management systems in Europe and the US, which enable the real-time control of every street light point that is connected with the system through wireless connectivity.