Alibaba Cloud, the digital technology and intelligence backbone of Alibaba Group, has once again excelled in its mission to support the group’s 11.11 Global Shopping Festival, thanks to its high-performance computing and innovative technology. Leveraging internally developed infrastructure upgrades, the group saw an 8% year-over-year savings in compute cost per unit of resource from April 1 to November 11.
“The breadth and depth of cloud technology implementation during 11.11 this year once again showed Alibaba’s cloud and technology best practices; whether it’s foundational architecture such as self-proprietary technology that powers high-performance computing and database products or consumer-facing XR (extended reality) and live streaming technologies. We intend to continue applying these proven capabilities to serve our customers even better and help them be more efficient, innovative and greener in their digital transformation journeys,” he said Li Cheng, Chief Technology Officer (CTO) of Alibaba Group.
“This year’s 11.11 pushes new boundaries for Alibaba Cloud, from innovating in green technology to continuing to be a pioneer in cloud computing. We know how important 11.11 is to e-commerce, and one of our annual focus points is to make the festival as efficient and eco-friendly as possible. We are looking to introduce more proven technologies that have successfully supported this year’s 11.11 to Philippine businesses,” he said Allen Guo, Country Manager for the Philippines, Alibaba Cloud Intelligence.
Do more with less with cloud-native and serverless innovations
This year’s 11.11 was powered by Alibaba Cloud’s dedicated processing unit for Apsara Cloud OS. The upgraded infrastructure system has significantly improved processing, storage, and network efficiency in the data centers supporting the event, while reducing network latency. For example, with this new update supported by cloud native technology, ordering, pre-sale balance payment and refund could be launched simultaneously with improved scalability and lower latency.
During 11.11 this year, the front page of Taobao, one of Alibaba’s e-commerce platform, was updated from the latest without servers technology, enabling automatic scaling with extreme elasticity based on actual workloads.
Alibaba Clouds cloud-native database products have also significantly expanded the capacity of consumers’ shopping carts by more than double, from 120 items to 300. ApsaraDB for Redis Enhanced Edition (Tair), a cloud-based in-memory database service for enterprises, supports new functions such as product grouping and sorting, allowing consumers to organize their shopping cart according to their preferences. They could also use the “select” feature to enjoy discounts among merchants, pre-order goods, and use coupons for a more rewarding shopping experience.
Innovative technology delivers a more engaging consumer experience
A more immersive shopping experience was created this year thanks to Alibaba’s proprietary technology supporting extended reality. Alibaba’s technology Leveraging 3D modeling a neural radiation field (NeRF), a neural network technology for generating new views of complex 3D scenes. During 11.11 this year, he assisted luxury retail and furniture brands, such as Burberry, Estee Lauder and SK-II, to build virtual stores on the Tmall e-commerce platform.
Through self-development 3D representation realistically representing natural light, flames and natural flowing water, an outdoor nature scene was created for sportswear brands including Descente (Japan), to showcase its latest products in a vibrant environment and invigorating. Consumers can also view products in three dimensions, allowing them to inspect details up close or virtually try on their chosen watches and accessories thanks to AR technologies. Consumers are also free to arrange different furniture items indoors or tents for outdoor camping.
Another new expressive interaction came from an XR-powered marketplace on Tmall and Taobao. Using the automatic 3D space creation technology by Alibaba’s DAMO Academy research institute, a virtual shopping street was built, with more than 700 products from 70 brands, including 30 internationally recognized franchises, such as Sanrio’s iconic Hello Kitty and the Hollywood franchise Minions . Shoppers can choose their own avatars, check out the products and place them in their virtual carts.
During this year’s 12-day festival, from October 31st to November 11th, nearly 2 million parcels were delivered from Xiaomanlv vehicles, Alibaba’s last mile logistics vehicle. This is double the parcel delivery volume compared to the same period last year. The logistics robot has been deployed in more than 400 campuses across China, which has significantly reduced the waiting time for parcel delivery during peak hours.
A greener 11.11 powered by clean energy
In addition to its cloud computing solutions that help reduce energy consumption, Alibaba Cloud’s five large-scale data centers across China also doubled the amount of clean energy used to support this year’s 11.11 compared to last year. More than 32 million kilowatt hours of electricity used by Alibaba Cloud to support 11.11 this year came from renewable energy, an average increase of 30% on a daily basis compared to last year. In addition, Alibaba Cloud’s Heyuan Data Center, the cloud company’s largest hyper-scale data center in southern China, now runs entirely on clean energy. Alibaba Cloud’s in-house developed immersion cooling technology reduced data center energy consumption, with energy use effectiveness (PUE) reaching a low of 1.09, a world-leading level.
Alibaba Cloud has also partnered with Tmall to leverage the carbon management platform, Energy Expert. Provided online carbon footprint models, calculations and certifications for more than 40 brands in various industries, including pulp & paper, food & personal care, to help them classify low carbon products, identify emitting resources emissions and lead informed sustainability practices to reduce carbon emissions.
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