Storage simply isn't the cash cow it used to be; vendors are seeing first hand that customers simply don't have the same brand loyalty and are having to discount hard and fast to win deals.
18 posts • joined 5 Dec 2012
I would be very surprised if storage arrays and ethernet switches weren't purchased for the purpose of use within an enterprise and resources controlled by said enterprise.. Still, far it be for me to get in the way of a good headline.
I'm not a Microsoft apologist, but by giving customers the option of purchasing single or packs of support incidents, Microsoft is being far more generous than plenty of other vendors that, if you phone up without a support contract, will simply direct you to their subscriptions team or account exec to purchase an annual contract.
Microsoft's approach allows customers to choose a support model that balances their budget and appetite for risk. If you don;t want to pay for premier support, either buy a pack of incidents or wait for something to break and whip out the credit card.
As a current Equalogic and, at least this time last year, potential Compellent customer, I did not find the existence of both Equalogic and Compellent solutions confusing. What I did find 'confusing', or, more accurately, a significant oversight, was the lack of ability to
1) replicate between Compellent and Equalogic
2) seamlessly migrate between Equalogic and Compellent
I'm currently recruiting new staff. The proportion of CV's from current IBM technical sales staff 'looking for new opportunities' is certainly noticeable.
He's correct in that it is a race to the bottom. I am forever reading interviews or articles in the IT press about companies that switched from AV Vendor X to Y because it reduced their TCO due to such and such a reason and Vendor Y demonstrated a commitment to your Information Security requirements, etc...
Actually, Vendor Y pretty much bought you out of your final year and tied you into a 3 year deal at such a rock-bottom price that it's a miracle the finance guys approved the P&L on the deal. In fact, you can probably guarantee that, unless they sign up for 5 years next time round, there's no way you'll be able to match the price and mid-way through the second year they'll be planning the move onto Vendor Z or maybe even back onto Vendor X. Unless, of course, your software is such a pain to remove and the customer is lazy that they decide to just stick with the higher price.
That, ladies and gentleman, is not a sustainable business model.
It isn't just about PCs
"Back in the day when I bought Dells, back when Dell were successful, I never spoke to a salesman. I just called up the website, configured the PC, paid the money and waited for it to be delivered."
"The joy of Dell - as opposed to HP/IBM - you checked out the specs on the website, ordered the machine on the website, it arrived."
Dell doesn't want to be a PC business. Selling Latitudes, Optiplexes and low-end PowerEdge servers and PowerVault Storage is a race to the bottom. Dell's challenge is to convince Enterprises to replace EMC and NetApp with Compellent or to replace Cisco TOR switches with Force10s. For that, they need the right sales teams with a heavier focus on highly technical Sales Engineers and account executives with the clout to create a strong business case to achieve a competitive win.
Re: Great, there went my plans for the Xmas Break
You bought an EVA this year? Hahaha.
Funny you should say that
But it's one of the first things our Dell Account Exec said when he visited the other day.
The author should have just submitted a one line article with the following link
and let us decide for ourselves
Is the SAN on it's way out?
Not by a long way. There is definitely an issue compounded by the prevalence of lots of different silos of storage infrastructure within a lot of sizeable organizations. They tend to procure storage on a per application or per business unit basis, so you get a sprawl of low to mid range storage.
Moving storage from shared arrays onto local servers and pooling won't solve the issue. It'll require extensive planning and you still haven't address the silo mentality that led to capacity being hoarded on a per department basis.
Maybe what you need is a better SAN and better processes to manage capacity, demand and chargeback.
BB made a mistake with their BB10 strategy and are paying the price.
Mobile devices are representative of the typical corporate hierarchy - premium 'lifestyle' devices for the execs and basic functional handsets for the general workforce. BB should have come to market with a range of handsets. The drip feed of the Z10, followed by Q10 followed by Q5 meant that only now are corporates considering the move, only the industry is telling them that BB is dying, so they'll hold off on any upgrades. Nokia played the strategy perfectly - 520 - 720 for the general workforce, 820 and above for the bigknobs.
A lot of mid sized companies probably threw out BES in favour of BES Express a couple of years ago. We certainly did. Seeing as BES10 is now commercially licensed again and Activesynch works perfectly well, there's no compelling case for BES10, so no real differentiator betwen BB and other vendors.
Companies really serious about enforcing multi level security have already looked at containerization and are probably well into a PoC of Good or other solution.
It'll never be a 2 horse race and Android and iOS will never be unseated as the main players, but there's a potentially huge market for the 3rd player and currently that's looking likely to be Nokia/WP8
Re: Looks like the layoffs helped too
...and whether you like them or loathe them, that is precisely why Microsoft are successful. For many people, 'good enough' is good enough.
Here's another idea
Stop your sales team up in Prestwick, or wherever it is they're based, cosying up to whichever partner has happened to take them out to Pizza Express that week and handing over my details so that they can contact me and try and pinch the business.
It shows a total disdain for partners that have spent years developing a solid working relationship with your customers.
Blackberry's big mistake isn't that they misjudged the market. It's that they misjudged their own market.
The majority of BB users love their physical keyboard. Whether the future is touchscreen or not is irrelevant, BB should have pandered to the majority and released the Q10 first.
BB are strongest in the enterprise market. Probably the kind of corporate environment that doesn't have a BYOD policy, doesn't offer activesynch and is far from being an early adopter. Requiring those customers to upgrade to BES10 to support new devices was a bad idea.
The MSP, SaaS provider has the option of turning off or turning down the tap as a way of solving an impasse or, at least, helping it reach a conclusion. Nothing like the threat of halving the number of concurrent users to help nudge that overdue invoice along.
Compare that to a traditional software/hardware business that has to resort to with-holding support or court action to retrieve equipment or monies owed.
Re: Don't do it for the money
The challenge is that cost can be interpreted in a number of ways. If you simply base your calculations on the cost of providing a service, role or entire function then it is pretty easy to make a sound financial case for outsourcing. Cost needs to be calculated based on cost of providing service, reliability of service and cost to business of reduced productivity due to any drop in service availability or quality or increase in resolution time.
I guess the point here is that if you are going to outsource, make sure you have the right processes and, if required, the right tools in place to ensure you can measure the performance of your supplier and have a sound contract in place to get things put right or allow you to exit if and when service levels drop.
For Oracle, the ELA creates a couple of challenges. For some companies, they've managed to negotiate a site or campus wide license that makes Oracle quite a cost effective in the long term. However, those ELAs possibly exclude certain lucrative options, like Real Application Clusters. So, it creates a barrier to entry for the Oracle salesperson as the customer has, for once, got the vendor over a barrel. So, you now have a customer that probably hasn't implemented the best, or most strategically appropriate solution, partly because they do not want to effect any change to their ELA. Not a great situation.
It also makes life difficult for Oracle when it comes to selling their current flavour of the month - the engineered system (pretty much Exadata).
However, the SaaS alternative isn't much better. Salesforce are no better than the traditional enterprise vendors in many respects - minimum contract commitment, annual billing, lots of hidden costs.