After Every Storm, There Is Always A Rainbow – Even In Technology
5 Oct 2020 by Faraheen Fadzilullah, Digital Media Architect
Who would have thought in 2020, most of our daily norms would be forced to go on halt and normal methods of buying groceries, attending meetings and going to class would be done virtually. When the number of people affected due to the Covid-19 pandemic increased, the government decided to have a Movement Control Order (MCO) or a lockdown. According to a report by The Malaysian Wireless, MCMC started to observe the increase of internet consumption and mobile device ownership since the MCO was implemented. In Malaysia, both the government and corporate sector took active measures on how to face this situation, especially in the education, entertainment and health sector. When we were given no choice but to be on lockdown, everyone played their part to keep us sane, hence we could see that a whole lot of “new-norm at home” activities were established.
Education institutions such as schools and universities are the most affected. This is due to the fact that most of our learning institutions do not have a proper digital off-site learning programme in place. Having a stable and good Learning Management System (LMS) and tools are crucial for this. Each tool or element of the LMS plays important roles to ensure the information is delivered successfully. There are many features that an LMS could have. Among those are videos and quizzes for the student to understand more of what they learn rather than just reading and revising. This is an effective way to ensure an interactive 2-way communication and this would clearly attract student’s interest in learning digitally.
In March 2020, video conferencing apps saw a record 62 million downloads. Much of the growth is due to increasing adoption of platforms like Amazon Chime, Google Hangouts Meet, Microsoft Teams and Zoom as both businesses and education switched to remote working to limit the spread of the virus. The introduction of digital learning platforms to cater to the people’s needs increased greatly in Malaysia. According to Microsoft Malaysia News Center, the Ministry of Education (MOE) launched a digital learning platform called DELIMa. Google, Microsoft and Apple participate in this initiative. Traditionally, educators would require students to attend examinations physically in order to avoid cheating and others. By having a secure and strong LMS with built-in security features, they will not have to worry about this matter. All they need to focus is to produce the content and let the LMS do the rest!
Apart from social media that keeps us busy, especially doing all those funny and amazing challenges such as “Terima Kasih Hero” and the “Don’t Rush Challenge”, the entertainment industry provided other various alternative entertainment materials. People were craving entertainment to beat the boredom of being stuck at home, doing their part to control the spread of Covid-19. Based on my experience handling support to our customers, the solution that we provide to Radio Television Brunei (RTB) as a broadcasting entity called RTBGo is able to capture 140, 643 users by using Google Analytics and 57TB usage with AWS CDN, Cloudfront. When the pandemic occurred, most of the ministry such as health, education and religious affairs kept on providing their infographics, videos and podcast content to the platform. Today, RTBGo is one of the most resourceful and reliable places for Bruneians to reach information easily.
We witnessed a shift as the industries evolved and were more creative. We witnessed a few major players in the entertainment industry curating new initiatives to help the Rakyat. Our satellite television provider, Astro announced that they had granted and unlocked all of their channels, and gave the all-access pass to all Astro subscribers. We could also see that Nextflix garnered a record boosting of 16 million new sign-ups as reported by the BBC. During the pandemic, many content providers grew like mushrooms.
Another project we did with our local tv station, RTM is the launch of RTM’s Pilot Podcast to cater to the ability to listen to high-quality content no matter where you are or what you’re doing. The industry is evolving to cater to their listeners and now RTM’s Podcast offers Nasional FM, Minnal FM, Ai FM and Radio Klasik to cater for entertainment and education rolled into one and tailor-made for many multi-tasking lifestyles.
How IPSB’s Digital Media team optimized the pandemic
At IPSB, our experience with developing Over-The-Top (OTT) platforms across the industry in both public sector and enterprise especially in Media & Entertainment & Education for the past 5 years saw a surge of demands during the MCO for Proof of Concepts (POCs) and virtual demonstrations. Our team deploys the backend operations and integrates with our partners in Cloud Technology such as Amazon Web Services (AWS) and their services such as Elemental, EC2, S3 and CloudFront. It is also more scalable and secured.
The landscape of education and entertainment s in Malaysia and around the world has changed due to Covid-19. Life, as a wise man once said, life does need to go on. Adjustments have to be made in order to survive in this situation. The pandemic teaches us valuable lessons, and one of which to be more prepared for any circumstance. As for the healthcare sector, I would like to take the time to graciously thank each and everyone involved who are still actively fighting till today. Remember that we are all frontliners. Don’t forget to always wash your hands, wear your mask and keep at social distancing.
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- IPSB Technology MCO Plan