A week before HP Discover 2014, a week after announcing another 16,000 staff cuts, and two weeks after Cisco CEO John Chambers wrote them off, HP is seeking to carve out a larger slice of the Big Data pie with extensions to its SAP HANA and HAVEn portfolios. The timing for the HP ConvergedSystem 900 for SAP HANA (and services) is clear, with SAPPHIRE running this week, but why the company couldn’t wait a week for the HAVEn (Hadoop-Autonomy-Vertica-Enterprise security-n/apps) announcements is a bit curious.
Chambers predicted ‘brutal consolidation’ of IT industry last month’s Cisco Live. “You’re going to see a brutal, brutal consolidation of the IT industry,” he warned, hinting at a “musical chairs-like movement” over the next few years.
He further predicted that many of the current players in “high tech” won’t exist 10 years from now. Citing Gartner research and recent earnings reports, Chambers pointed fingers at IBM and Hewlett-Packard, citing the beleaguered tech giants haven’t produced revenue for some time.
So the timing was perfect a week later when HP, after announcing a 1% drop in quarterly revenue, said it plans to cut as many as 16,000 more jobs, in addition to the previously announced 34,000 jobs it was planning to pare from its workforce of 250,000-plus. HP is looking to cut back more in “areas not central to customer-facing and innovation agendas,” said CEO Meg Whitman, rather than areas like research.
Using big data and analytics to improve IT operations is a major focus, said Roy Ritthaler, VP Product Marketing, IT Operations Management, HP Software. We are the leaders, he said, the “farthest, biggest and first” in driving this segment. We went from the December timeframe when we launched the first three HAVEn applications to four we’re announcing today. “I think we’re one of the most aggressive consumers of the big data platform.”
HP unveiled HAVEn at last year’s Discover, intended to allow organizations to consume, manage and analyze massive streams of IT operational data from a variety of HP products, as well as third-party sources. “The majority of information is under-utilized or not used at all,” said June Manley, Director Big Data Solutions, HP. “We want to ensure that our customers are monetizing all the data that they have, regardless of the format.”
The platform was expanded in January with enhanced integration with HP IDOL 10.5. The company announced that more than 120 value added resellers (VARs), service providers and systems integrators had adopted the HAVEn platform to deliver big data solutions.
Improving IT operations is a big challenge, but it offers equally big rewards to both customers and vendors. Most organizations have suffered at least one unplanned data center outage over the last 24 months, with an average duration of 91 minutes, and an average cost of $7,900 per minute.
“IT ops generates lots of – and generally valuable – data that tends to be ignored by business,” said Ritthaler. “Only 10% of data IT has access to is used.”
Many companies are investigating SDN, network virtualization and other approaches as they seek to automate as many elements of their IT infrastructures as possible, said Brad Casemore, research director at IDC. “IT is being asked to do more things faster and in shorter windows,” said Ronni Colville, a Gartner vice president and distinguished analyst for IT operations management. “Automation is what everybody’s seeking right now, and we’re seeing a big increase in the number of projects.”
In a recent blog, Technology Business Research Senior Analyst Jillian Mirandi noted that HP Software’s bread-and-butter, ITSM, is moving to a services-led model, a transition which was initiated by the launch of HAVEn. Unfortunately, like competitors CA and BMC, which are also struggling to change traditional habits, HP’s sales teams have not broken old habits of leveraging software to sweeten hardware deals on the cheap.
At the end of April TBR said ‘at its core, HP’s Software value proposition revolves around automation and orchestration, with the ultimate goal of simultaneously simplifying and enhancing the toolsets HP provides to IT.’ Macro trends such as the proliferation of big data and analytics initiatives at various levels within large enterprises support HP gaining traction in these markets.
‘By positioning its Vertica, Autonomy and HAVEn platforms as extensible foundations onto which enterprises can move and manage workloads while planning for the future, HP seeks to provide its software capabilities to developers eager to establish footholds in enterprise markets.’ However, TBR believes Software’s value proposition continues to be tied to hardware, even though core themes such as cloud, mobility, big data and security are primarily software-driven. ‘While HP’s hardware segments continue to weave in pieces of Software’s wide portfolio, and deeper integration is on the company’s road map, TBR anticipates the impact of Software on HP’s larger transformation will be limited until it positions its software capabilities on par with its hardware and services prowess.’
It’s primarily about helping customers, said Ritthaler. “It works best when you solve very focused customer issues.” He expects using big data, automation and analysis to to address customer issues will be the future of IT operations. “I think we’re really changing the game with this”.
As for SAP HANA, it is a big opportunity, said Tom Joyce, SVP and GM, HP Converged System, back in a March interview. SAP has more than 250,000 customers and we have 47,000 customers using SAP, including more than 800 system implementations for SAP HANA. “We believe a large number of SAP customers are going to migrate to HANA over the next few years.”
HP demonstrated Project Kraken, which effectively triples the amount of memory on a single but scalable server designed for processing big data, was demonstrated at last year’s Sapphire. The prototype, running on Intel’s Xeon E7 processor, supported up to 12 terabytes of memory, versus the current industry standard of four terabytes.
The Fiddly Bits (& Bytes)
The commercialization of the HP and SAP co-innovation initiative “Project Kraken,” HP ConvergedSystem 900 for SAP HANA, to be available this fall, is a massively scalable system that enables clients to manage and analyze extremely large and diverse data sets from a single system to facilitate real-time business decisions. It is certified by SAP to deliver up to 12 terabytes of data in a single memory pool, and is preconfigured, optimized and tested by HP Factory Express, enabling clients to order, install and operate the system in as little as 30 days.
HP also introduced HP Proactive Care Advanced and HP Consulting Services for SAP HANA that deliver rapid deployment and a smooth migration to HP ConvergedSystem 900 for SAP HANA. The company is also bringing new cloud-based services to SAP HANA through HP Helion Business Applications for SAP solutions which may also be enabled via the HP as-a-Service Offering for SAP HANA.
HP is introducing several new big data analytics and services management solutions, including:
-HP Service Anywhere is the first big data service management Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) solution that embeds HP Autonomy IDOL and HP Vertica to deliver self-sufficiency to end-users and proactively drives IT Agent productivity with big data analytics and unique context relevant knowledge;
-HP Operations Analytics 2.11 platform now features big data driven automated root cause and predictive analytics capabilities to help organizations resolve issues faster and uncover early warning signs of IT issues;
-HP Operations Log Intelligence 1.0 is a new business service management solution that enables organizations to gain intelligence hidden in their massive amounts of log files to perform faster triage and improve IT service levels while reducing operational costs;
-an on-premise version of HP Propel, giving customers the choice to realize the benefits of HP Propel with or without additional managed services; now available in free, on-premise and premium service offerings, Propel enables IT organizations to deliver and broker traditional, cloud and hybrid IT services, address point-to-point integration issues and lower administrative costs.
HP Service Anywhere and HP Operations Log Intelligence 1.0 and HP AppPulse are available worldwide now. HP Operations Analytics 2.1 will be available worldwide in June. HP Propel On-Premise will be available worldwide in July.