Thursday, January 21, 2010

HP & Microsoft: So what exactly are they selling here?

"The enemy of my enemy is my friend" is a proverb that does much to explain the periodic rejuvenation of the HP/Microsoft alliance. Although IBM pulled out of the PC market a while ago they are still a fearsome competitor to HP for services, and Microsoft has never really forgiven IBM for continuing to sell Lotus Notes/Domino.

Every couple of years the Microsoft/HP alliance comes up with a new joint offering to push into the marketplace. That's fine by me since the competition from HPM keeps Big Blue from getting too complacent about its own offerings. However I must admit I'm a little dubious about one part of the latest HP&M offering.
"Today when a customer buys hardware and software and marry it up in their IT centers, they go about the integration process themselves. [Instead,] software will be installed and optimized for throughput and performance and matched to the infrastructure underneath it and have management solutions ready to go," said Scott Farrand, vice president, enterprise storage and server software, technology solutions group, HP.

That might work if all of the customer organizations run on the 'standard' HP architecture and is tuned according to Microsoft 'Best Practice', but what if they run a mixed vendor environment or have good reason to adopt other architectures? My bet is that 100% of organizations investing in these HPM products will need to go through a reconfiguration phase for these new products to slot them into their own multi-vendor vision of the future.

So what is the benefit of HPM selling an 'optimized' hardware/software package if it all has to be re-optimized once it arrives on the customer's premises? That brings the highly profitable Services portfolio into the mix and while I certainly don't have a problem with anything that builds the services market, it does cancel out the perceived value in what HPM are selling as a pre-optimized package.

Still, I suppose it will do for another few years until the HPM machine decide to reinvigorate their alliance with a new set of offerings.

1 comment:

HP 4250 toner said...

I think this process will be far too costly, as well as troublesome for all the companies that will invest in it. This will need to be well planned out, as well as require careful attention to the current systems.