Cyber Security Weekly Podcast

Cyber Security Weekly Podcast


Episode 206 - COVID-19 impact on Asia’s technology sector, Canalys Update #2

May 24, 2020

Interview with Sharon Hiu, APAC Channel Analyst with Canalys, based in Singapore.


This is our second update podcast (recorded 22 May, 2020) to gain current Canalys observations of the APAC Technology Channel sector and the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic.


What has been the overall impact for Asia?



  • Generally, partners are more optimistic now than they were in March, as they made adjustments to their businesses and access financial support extended to them by vendors and other agencies. Recognition as essential workers during the pandemic.

  • Overall customer satisfaction of how IT has shown their support for the businesses is high

  • Financial performance in the technology sector performs better than expected and demonstrates the role of IT individuals, as well as cloud, in a crises.

  • China extends its 5G lead as Europe postpones 5G rollout and US grapples with the pandemic

  • IT pricing increases due to impacted supply chain. Likelihood of IT supply chain shifting away from China moving towards a more distributed one

  • Overall better infrastructure to manage crises and facilitate decentralized workforce

  • Business outlook continues to remain uncertain as governments seek to ensure the virus remains under control and recession hits markets


What can we expect to see as countries relax lock-down restrictions?



  • Placing priority towards physical area cleanliness and ensuring that the virus does not resurge. Hong Kong and South Korea show that this is possible, although we have learnt never to underestimate.

    • Opportunities in robotics and automation, surveillance to identify health violations



  • Possible consumer spending surge due to pent up demand during lock-down. Chinese were “revenge shopping” and “revenge travelling” post lock-down.

  • Organizations that are digitally enabled are more resilient and will better weather through 2020. Some organizations have invested but overall, we can expect greater investments in cybersecurity and optimization of remote work.

  • Marketing and sales are done digitally more, which has several implications including budget shifts away from physical events in 2021, experimenting for better digital audience engagement, training in new skills. Vendors like the extensive reach allowed by digital, which translates to a higher likelihood of better ROI.

    • In terms of web-conferencing, APAC seems to be more at ease using voice only while Caucasian counterparts are very comfortable with videos.




What are some longer term impact?



  • Market recovery depends on how well the virus is contained and stimulus measures

    • Projects that were paused previously might resume but we’ll probably can tell better in a few more weeks.



  • Hybrid model for future events where virtual attendance becomes the norm?

  • More flexible work arrangements

  • Formalization of data protection and privacy laws, reassessing labours laws such as minimum wages and compulsory leave days, increased efforts self-sufficiency in essential goods and materials such as food and agriculture supplies.


Related Episodes


20 March - Episode 197 - COVID-19 impact on Asia’s technology sector, Canalys Update #1


22 February - Episode 194, COVID-19 deals a major blow to Asia’s technology sector, Canalys Report