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HP introduces the third wave of virtualization

Tom Joyce, the senior vice president and GM of HP Converged Systems at HP Discover

BARCELONA, SPAIN – HP introduced two ConvergedSystems products (code named Sharks) along with a new go-to-market strategy built on the operational expenditure model at the HP Discover conference.

The two new products are called: ConvergedSystems 300 and 700 and will be delivered as an integrated solutions that may include software from Microsoft such as Exchange and Sharepoint, Red Hat, Citrix, and VMware right from the factory. These new systems may also include SAP Hanna, but that will go through either SAP directly or an SAP authorized channel partner.

The ConvergedSystems 700 is targeted at service providers and large enterprises, but the 300 will be heavily focused on the channel and is aimed at the SMBs and workgroups inside larger organizations.

HP also introduced the ConvergedSystems 100 that will feature Citrix XenDesktop and is slated for 5,000 users and below. Tom Joyce, senior vice president and GM for HP Converged Systems, said there will also be a version for hosted desktops by HP’s Moonshot technology.

“There is a new wave of cloud virtualization. Virtualization has gone through two waves and evolved to become an enterprise standard. But it’s still evolving as a converged infrastructure tool for big data, mobility and apps for business. We are at a turning point today. Customers need more and they need it fast. The third wave starts today and its hyper efficient systems for virtualization where the networking, the software all comes together in one efficient system,” Joyce said.

Bill Veghte, enterprise vice president and GM of HP’s Enterprise Group, said the these new products also come with a new go-to-market economics that addresses the customer’s demand for Opex. The pricing for this third wave of virtualization starts at $136,600 for the HP ConvergedSystem 300, but the Joyce added that channel partners will be able to sell it in an Opex model starting at $2,250 per month. Solution providers can add-on to that price by building in their own professional services on top of that. Add-on capacity is priced at $550 a month. Pricing for HP ConvergedSystem 100 for hosted desktops starts at $137,999 for 180 users.

The strategy behind HP’s Enterprise Group mirrors that of its Printing and Personal Systems unit. It’s a new style of IT from HP, said Veghte.

“Every customer is interested in the Opex concept but they are still learning. What does that mean? The vendor ecosystem is learn as well. We introduced in Europe flexible capacity service and we are discovering that as excited as we are they are equally as excited for the business model innovations,” Veghte said.

The technology bet that HP is making with its ConvergedSystems portfolio is that customers and the channel no longer are interested in doing hardware integration.

“Businesses do not want to assemble. It’s way too hard and too many people are touching it with storage people, networking people, and the same thing goes for channel partners. It’s set up for making mistakes with too many people customizing things. You can’t do big data or VDI because of all this integration. They want to move past customization to standard and make it simple,” Joyce said.

The second part of HP’s bet (that channel partners are not interested in integration) maybe debated by some partners. Paul Miller, HP’s executive VP for Converged Systems, said channel partners should look at it as an opportunity to do more deals because hardware integration work is usually done by expensive IT staff. Instead use that human capital for higher margin producing professional services such as data centre integration, backup and disaster recovery.

“By doing this you may hit all the bonuses and kicker incentives because they will all be linked into one basket and could net into the mid to high 30 points,” Miller said.

The code named for ConvergedSystems is Sharks and Joyce described it as “a perfect virtualization machine.” “Sharks are hunting machines with purpose and no waste. There are sophisticated animals that can go 35 miles per hour in the water. Sharks are design for thrust and speed. They do one thing and they do it well. That is how we built these new systems. They are designed with purpose; fast, simple and integrated,” Joyce added.