Lenovo DCG – Continuing to TRANSFORM…

Back in June, I attended a media and analyst event in New York City hosted by Lenovo’s Data Center Group (DCG) and entitled, TRANSFORM. The point of the event was to highlight the strategic expansion and repositioning of DCG’s enterprise portfolio to address and support what Lenovo CEO Yuanqing Yang called an “intelligence (industrial) revolution that is already here.” The primary drivers for this revolution are the massive growth of information, along with advances in big data analytics and artificial intelligence (AI). The value of that information rests in the insights it provides about business processes, customers, suppliers, partners and competitors. Some might say that Lenovo’s strategy offers little in the way of new or original thinking. After all, most or all other system vendors and server makers support initiatives that are similar to Lenovo’s. But the bigger questions are in how the company’s new DCG portfolio approaches those issues, how it is continuing to evolve and how well its strategy is resonating with customers. Let’s consider those points further. To read the complete article, CLICK HERE NOTE: This column was originally published in the Pund-IT...

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Understanding The Hype Around Hyperconverged Infrastructure

There is a lot of hype around hyperconverged infrastructure (HCI). All the big vendors and a number of lesser-known smaller ones are in the game. Dell EMC has doubled down on its HCI portfolio investments; NetApp is entering the market leveraging its Solidfire technology; HPE is investing in growing its SimpliVity line; Cisco acquired Springpath so it could offer its own line, but it also partners with Nutanix, HPE and just about everyone else! Speaking of Nutanix, it was a category pioneer (along with SimpliVity) and its Dell EMC branded business is still growing, even though Dell EMC has somewhat competing products with VxRack and VxRail (the 3 HCI products serve different use cases – a topic for another blog!). Nutanix is also doing a healthy business through Lenovo and its channel partners and it has an agreement with IBM to offer its HCI on Power systems. Lesser-known (but fast growing) Pivot3 just announced 50% growth in bookings! Hitachi Vantara has a product it is also leveraging for Lumada IoT, and VMware sells vSAN for HCI use cases. I’m still just scratching the surface- I know I’ve left some vendors out – it’s a long list! What’s behind all this vendor investment and noise? Lots of user interest. Edwin Yuen and I recently sat down and dug into our new HCI research. In this video, we define what HCI is, discuss why IT organizations are so interested, and look at how HCI will impact more traditional approaches to IT infrastructure. Please watch and I would love to hear your feedback! To read the complete article, CLICK...

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ThinkPad 25 Celebrates 25 Years of Solid Innovation

It is not often we get a collectible notebook. I’ve had a few over the years—the ThinkPad Butterfly, the Acer Ferrari Laptop, and there have been several Dell collectibles like the Dell Adamo. Unlike most laptops, even when these are “done” from a computing sense you generally keep them because they are a part of history. One of the most iconic brands in notebooks however is the ThinkPad. The ThinkPad arguably had the first “collectible” (the only one I sadly didn’t keep) and they just recently announced their 25-year anniversary edition—the ThinkPad 25—in limited quantities. Unlike many of the collectibles I’ve mentioned—which were often both pretty and relatively fragile—the ThinkPad 25 reflects its business roots. Like a collectible truck—as opposed to a collectible sportscar—it is comparatively robust. Let’s talk ThinkPads this week. For more information, CLICK HERE NOTE: This column was originally published in the Pund-IT...

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Lenovo DCG and the Benefits of “Failing Fast”

IT industry vendors evolve in different ways and for different reasons but corporate acquisitions can affect that process substantially in both expected and unexpected ways. For example, purchasing new products and/or intellectual property can enable the acquirer to enter unfamiliar markets far quicker than if organic development were pursued. Such deals can also substantially bolster the buyer’s reputation, especially if it purchases a solid brand and carefully manages product quality and customer relationships. But virtually every deal encounters at least some turbulence related to customer- and technology-integration issues. How and how well a vendor negotiates those challenges should be points of interest for IT customers and partners alike. To read the complete article, CLICK HERE NOTE: This column was originally published in the Pund-IT...

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HPE: “Nowhere Left To Hide”
Jun08

HPE: “Nowhere Left To Hide”

Hewlett Packard Enterprise is in Sin City this week, holding its annual customer and partner event (HPE Discover 2017), accompanied with the usual flurry of product announcements and preceded by another troubling financial report. HPE’s Meg Whitman, President and Chief Executive Officer, believes the company is heading for an upswing, “accelerating out of the turnaround”, according to a recent interview. “I can feel it,” she said. “It is just smarter, easier, simpler. You cannot underestimate the accountability. There is nowhere left to hide at this company. I see a perfect place. There is nowhere left for partners to hide. There is no place for HPE employees to hide. It just makes things far easier and, frankly, more fun because you can get stuff done faster.” Faster, maybe, but better? HPE’s commodity hardware businesses and primary revenue generators — servers, storage, and to a lesser extent, networking — all took hits in the most recent quarter, with the to-be-expected impacts on revenues and margins. Second quarter FY17, announced on May 31, included a 13% year-over-year drop in GAAP net revenue ($7.4 billion vs $8.5 billion), and a more than 50% drop in GAAP operating margin (2.4% vs 2016’s 5.3%). While Whitman is predicting a speedy upturn, the current performance is not reassuring: -Enterprise Group revenue was $6.2 billion, down 13% year over year, down 7% when adjusted for divestitures and currency, with an 8.8% operating margin; -servers revenue was down 14%; -storage revenue was down 13%; and, -networking revenue was down 30%. Overall IT spending is expected to inch up 1.4% this year, to $3.5 trillion, with the datacenter segment pegged at a very anemic 0.3% growth. “We are seeing a shift in who is buying servers and who they are buying them from” said John-David Lovelock, research vice president at Gartner. “Enterprises are moving away from buying servers from the traditional vendors and instead renting server power in the cloud from companies such as Amazon, Google and Microsoft. This has created a reduction in spending on servers which is impacting the overall data center system segment.” Vendor revenue for the global server market declined 4.6% to $11.8 billion in 1Q17, but HPE took a much bigger hit, with a 15.8% YoY decline in sales. Second-place Dell — 20.1% vs HPE’s 24.2% market share — grew its revenues 4.7%, while Cisco, IBM, and Lenovo were statistically tied for third place, and all saw revenue declines (3%, 34.7% and 16.5%, respectively). Storage was worse. 4Q16 enterprise factory revenue was down 6.7% YoY, to $11.1 billion, with Dell holding down top spot, courtesy of its EMC acquisition, and with HPE tied with...

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