It’s hard turning a company around when its main markets are in a freefall (just ask Dell), and HP’s latest financial results reflect just how bad the PC, server and storage markets have been. In fact the only bright spot, if you can call a business unit that accounts for just 3% of your revenues a bright spot, was software, which was up nearly 1% year-over-year, and 4.3% sequentially.
“In Software, we saw good performance and improved execution,” said CEO Meg Whitman. While security was the star performer, and there was triple-digit growth in Vertica, she said there was sequential license revenue growth in Autonomy.
Autonomy has been a costly acquisition, but HP continues to plug away at the management and analytic tool software portfolio, with the latest announcements including an ‘important’ update to its Application Information Optimizer (v7.1). In June it unveiled Autonomy Legacy Data Cleanup, an information governance solution intended to help organizations access, understand and classify, as well as defensibly dispose of outdated and unnecessary information. Announced in August and expected to ship at the end of September, Autonomy LiveVault 7.7 is a cloud-based data protection solution with integrated VMware vSphere support that will unify data protection and recovery across both virtual and physical environments, said HP.
HP is not the only vendor struggling in the software arena, i.e. CA and BMC, but acquisitions have been an issue, as has the continuing negative experience with Autonomy, according to a recent blog from Technology Business Research. The software unit is expected to see a return to revenue growth in 2015. ‘Analytics-focused integrations across the software portfolio along with security products and SaaS launches around IT service management (ITSM) have moved to the heart of HP Software’s strategy — and HP Software (according to Whitman) is moving to the heart of HP’s strategy.’
Until recently, information governance (IG) has been considered a “boil the ocean approach”, said Joe Garber, Vice President, Information Governance, HP Autonomy, and never really took off. That’s changing, with increased demands being put on it to deal with data saved everywhere, being accessed in different ways (i.e. mobility), and internal and external regulations, he said.
Secondly, technology is advancing to the point where we can solve problems, said Garber. We can go in and address a very specific problem with a very specific solution, build the ROI and apply it elsewhere.
The new cloud, mobile, big data and social era is calling attention to how and why organizations capture, use and secure the data and information they use to run their businesses, stated 451 Research earlier this year. ‘Concerns over cost, efficiency, regulation, privacy, intellectual property, security and, yes, lawsuits and criminal charges, require organizations to re-evaluate and bolster their IG strategies, or if absent, immediately establish one.’
According to its data from late 2012, in organizations of more than 1,000 employees – where information governance challenges are most likely the greatest – 65% of respondents found it to be very important, although only 32% of senior management believed IG programs to be very important. 451 believes IG is set to take off as a marketplace and will do so visibly over the next 18 months. In addition to HP, other vendors pushing IG-related solutions include: AccessData; Druva; EMC Documentum; Exterro; Guidance Software; HiSoftware; IBM; OpenText; RSD; Symantec; and ZyLAB.
The potential paybacks from IG and AIO can be significant, said HP, from allowing customers to dramatically reduce their storage footprint, minimize backup costs, retire old databases and applications, and ensure data is managed with the same policies and rigor as its ‘live’ data. The solution reduces storage costs by up to 48% and reduces backup time by up to 50%, said Garber.
Another critical benefit is its flexibility, he said. Customers don’t have to make an either-or choice of hybrid, public or private cloud, or worry about losing control of their data. They can have an integrated on-premise and cloud solution and move into the cloud where, when and how they want.
Feeds & Speeds:
HP Application Information Optimizer (AIO) 7.1 introduces a cloud-based approach to managing legacy structured data, additional connectivity to databases, and greater leverage of Autonomy’s information processing engine, the Intelligent Data Operating Layer (IDOL). It also includes:
-added IBM DB2 archiving to search and extract data from IBM DB2 databases; and,
-expanded IDOL search across hybrid environments.