GURUGRAM- Air India (AI), a prominent global airline based in India, has successfully transitioned to an IT infrastructure exclusively on the cloud, culminating in the closure of its historic data centers in Mumbai and New Delhi.
This milestone establishes Air India as one of the early major global airlines to shift all computational workloads entirely to the cloud.
Air India Closes Data Centers
The strategic move enhances Air India’s technological agility and scalability, facilitating accelerated digital transformation initiatives and the introduction of innovative digital solutions to improve operational efficiencies, customer experiences, and employee engagement.
The closure of these data centers is expected to yield net savings of nearly a million dollars annually.
Dr. Satya Ramaswamy, Chief Digital and Technology Officer at Air India, emphasized the airline’s commitment to a “cloud-only” computational infrastructure philosophy.
Beyond cost savings and operational efficiencies, the cloud is viewed as a transformative approach to computing, serving as a crucial catalyst for innovation acceleration.
Air India’s transformation journey involves a strategic blend of Software-as-a-Service, Platform-as-a-Service, and Infrastructure-as-a-Service methodologies. This approach enables faster innovation, providing a flexible and reliable computational and networking foundation.
The migration to a cloud-only infrastructure was a meticulously planned and executed process managed by Air India’s top architects and engineers in Silicon Valley, Gurugram, and Kochi.
The complexity of the exercise involved migrating computational workloads from mainframes, hundreds of servers, substantial data volumes, and various equipment to the cloud.
Dr. Ramaswamy acknowledged the significant contribution of the now-closed data centers to Air India’s global standing. The airline ensured that colleagues who had worked at these data centers for years were integral to the migration, undergoing training on new skills to continue contributing to a modernized Air India.
As one of the earliest adopters of high-performance computing and storage globally, the closed data centers played a pivotal role in driving innovations and automations across diverse areas of the airline’s commercial and financial functions.
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Puneet Chandok, President of Microsoft India & South Asia, expressed pride in Microsoft’s involvement in Air India’s cloud transformation. The successful migration to Microsoft Azure highlights the potency and flexibility of the Microsoft cloud, showcasing its ability to support global airline industry leaders like Air India effectively.
The ongoing collaboration between Microsoft and Air India aims to foster innovation, leverage the potential of AI, and establish a platform for enhanced decision-making and superior customer experiences.
With its full transition to the cloud, Air India is poised to expedite its transformation journey. This shift not only unlocks new capabilities but also provides an expanded talent pool for innovation, allowing the airline to focus on inventive initiatives rather than managing on-premise computational infrastructure.
Anticipated outcomes include the introduction of various innovations in customer-facing channels and employee experiences, all powered by advanced cloud capabilities in areas such as data analytics and AI, including seamlessly embedded technologies like Generative AI throughout the company’s applications.
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