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Hitachi unveils its continuous cloud infrastructure

HDS Virtual Storage Platform

TORONTO – Hitachi Data Systems (HDS) Canada‘s cloud message for the channel took flight today as the vendor used SkyService’s airplane hangar near Pearson International Airport to release three new products that are part of its Continuous Cloud Infrastructure platform.

Available today in HDS Canada’s Partner Quote Manager is the Virtual Storage Platform G1000. The company also announced the Storage Virtualization Operating System (SVOS) and a new version of the Hitachi Command Suite management platform, along with enhancements to its Unified Compute Platform converged portfolio. The announcement in Toronto was part of a seven city global launch that began in Brazil and went through Japan, Dubai and the Netherlands and would wind up in San Francisco.

SVOS is a standalone storage virtualization operating system that provides a common architecture that can go across all platforms, including a software-defined data centre.  SVOS will feature  flash optimization, automated tiering and non-disruptive data migration.

“Cloud is just a buzz word,” said Miklos Sandorfi, vice-president of solutions and cloud for HDS, of its continuous cloud infrastructure strategy. “You first have to talk about the business challenges and see if IT can align to that. You need to know where the business is going. To get a business app up and running quickly you need to make sure that you are always up and running all the time.”

The G1000 natively deploys SVOS and, according to Sandorfi, is key to the company’s overall strategy.

Sandorfi told CDN that the G1000 can start small and scale to as much as 3M IOPS, and over 48Gbps of usable bandwidth which can increase a customer’s speed to market by handling big data and cloud faster.

“Businesses need to move quickly. They cannot wait for IT to help them remain competitive. Businesses are feeling the pressure and might have to move outside of IT to gain a competitive advantage,” said Michael Cremen, executive vice-president of global sales for HDS, who was on hand for the Toronto launch.

Also on hand at the Toronto launch were executives from SAP and VMware. SAP, VMware and Microsoft are strategic OEM partners of HDS and worked with the company to ensure SVOS and the G1000 were certified for Microsoft’s cloud and SAP Hana, and can be integrated with VMware solutions.

Cremen told CDN that alliance partners such as SAP and VMware are part of the company’s approach to maintaining a consistent channel strategy for solution providers.

“This is not a flash in the pan type of partnership we have with SAP and VMware. We have invested over multiple generations to get close to this ecosystem of partners. Moving forward we will look to tighten integration with the channel for longer term solution selling with partners. This is what we are committed to,” Cremen added.

HDS has estimated these new products could touch thousands of channel partners.

Marcel Escorcio, regional vice-president and general manager of HDS Canada, said the business demands in Canada are changing. This new platform is a heterogeneous solution for SMBs managed with one software suite, ensuring cost savings.

Peter Kriparos, regional manager, Canadian strategic alliances and channel partners for HDS, told CDN that for the Canadian market HDS Canada will be focused on fewer channel partners but all of them would still be in this ecosystem. The subsidiary has rolled out two channel programs to support this launch: the Services Specialization Program and the Cloud Service Provider program.

“These programs will empower the solution provider and bring about more fluidity. It’s a pretty powerful message for traditional VARs and SIs; its multi-touch for this ecosystem to help them own the customer,” he said.

Inside Hitachi’s channel programs are net new account bonuses for new customer wins and new technology sales specifically on HDS’s Unified Compute Platform and Content Platform products. Kriparos said that these are all stackable and complement the Hitachi Rewards program. Kriparos was unable to provide CDN with specific margin percentages because the company is currently changing the rebate program.