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Chinese cloud service companies

Are still slow, but how will they be lagging behind? And once the Americans screw up the data confidentiality safeguards, cost may be the decider.

In terms of performance, Alibaba cannot come close. For a Chinese site, it does impressive work, handling $5.8 billion in commerce on China’s heaviest shopping day. The Alibaba S.E.C. filing says its cloud does 3.6 million computing transactions a minute. That sounds like a lot, until you consider that the AWS databases alone handle 1.5 million transactions a second.

Like Baidu and Tencent, two other big Chinese online companies with cloud businesses, Alibaba’s focus for now seems to be on mainland China, possibly as a place to learn the business before moving farther out.

Like Alibaba, Tencent recently opened a data center in Hong Kong. Politically, Hong Kong is China’s special administrative region; practically, it can be a midway point between international and domestic commerce. From there, the probable growth would be in Asia, where China has many existing commercial relationships, or Africa, still mostly open territory for cloud computing.

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