In this ESG On Location Video, ESG's Bob Laliberte, Dan Conde, Terri McClure and Edwin Yuen provide their insights into the AWS re:Invent 2017 event.
Read Bob's related ESG Blog: The Relevance of Networking at AWS re:Invent (with Video)
Read Edwin's related ESG Blog: AWS continues to dominate, but is that good for you? (with video)
Read Dan's related ESG Blog: AWS Is Not Slowing Down at re:Invent (with Video)
Announcer: The following is an ESG On Location Video.
Bob: This year was my first re:Invent and I have to say, it was a really impressive event. It pulled in over 43,000 IT professionals and it took up, probably, half of Vegas Strip. There's a lot of buzz and excitement at the show and reminded me a lot of the early VMworld and TechEd shows. All the sessions were sold out, and all the attendees I spoke to had really good reasons for attending and had specific sessions that they wanted to attend and were clearly there to learn. It was really interesting to see how much AWS continues to innovate. From the keynotes really emphasizing that they're the company who wants to stay ahead and be ahead, so it was really easy for organizations to see how they can onboard, and now, actually, extending out and getting to some of those use cases.
ESG sent a number of ESG analysts here to make sure there's full coverage. So let's hear from a few of them as well.
Edwin: Hi. I'm Edwin Yuen, ESG analyst on systems management, PaaS, and DevOps and I'm here at the AWS re:Invent show for 2017. Now, today, we just heard a lot of the announcement that Andy Jassy made about AWS and some of the new services that they have. I think there are two key points that we wanna think about when it comes to the announcements that were made.
First was really the sheer size and the momentum that AWS has. They'd really talked abut the marketspace that they have, and that they're still growing by 42% every year, an $18-billion runway, and what we're seeing is that even though AWS is very large, they continue to grow and add customers and services.
The other point we wanna know is about all the different services that AWS continues to add. They showed, you know, the plenty of services that they had on a large chart, how they compare against any other providers, but it is an open question about those companies that are multi-cloud, and our research found that over two-thirds of companies are multi-cloud, but do those multi-cloud companies do? They invest in AWS and take advantage of those unique services? Or do they then kinda limit themselves to use services that are found across providers if they wanna use multiple clouds? I think AWS's position is that people wanna go ahead and focus on these new advanced services, ones unique to AWS, and that is gonna drive the usage of AWS in comparison to the other vendors. But it is a very interesting area, especially for multi-cloud users to understand how much they wanna go ahead and invest with AWS, and how much they wanna hedge their bets and go with the other cloud providers.
Terri: I'm here at AWS 2017 with a whole slew of my ESG colleagues, mainly because there's a whole slew of things being announced this week. I mean, AWS, frankly, has an enormous portfolio that touches just about every part of tech. This is my first re:Invent conference and I'm impressed by the breadth and depth of their integrations across the ecosystem. But I think the part that impresses me the most is the visibility of VMware here at re:Invent. It's been mentioned on the main stage. It was mentioned in the analyst breakouts quite prominently.
Now, if you were to ask me three years ago, I'd have said, "VMware needs to partner up with somebody like AWS because the cloud is going to play a huge role in our future," but I never would have expected it to happen. Fast forward a couple of years, and the partnership was announced last year, and of course, looked at with speculation, the first regional zone was announced in August. But now here, they've had presence on the main stage. As I said, they've had presence in every session. And they really are executing on the partnership. It's much more than a marketing partnership. It's a true integration partnership. And my friends at VMware and Amazon tell me they're seeing much higher adoption of the initial solutions than they expected.
So now we've got DR, we've got bare metal containers that you can run VMware on in the cloud, we've got more zones getting introduced, and you're gonna hear more as time goes on. So to me, that's one of the most significant things that I've heard primarily because customers I talk to really want to manage hybrid IT environment. They wanna have ability to go into the cloud for right applications when they're ready. This VMware partnership makes that ability to have a common set of tools on-prem and in the cloud a reality. And I think it's gonna continue to gain traction and we're gonna see a lot more in the years to come.
Dan: So this is Dan Conde, cloud platforms analyst at ESG. And I also cover networking, and one of the things that really pleased me is the fact that at the Partner Summit at re:Invent, they formalized the network competency that allows a handful of really good networking ISVs to be true participants in the ecosystems of ISVs that provide solutions on top of AWS by providing the confidence to the enterprise customers that they are well-integrated and tested and cross a certain bar that allows the ecosystem of storage as well as compute partners to be joined by networking. That seems like a relatively minor thing, but it really completes the entire vision of having storage, compute and networking, all having the right kind of competencies to attract all the good ISVs to be available for the enterprise customers through the marketplace. And that is a partner-oriented movement, but it shows that AWS, with its maturity, shows that it's not just the technology that matters, but actually involving an entire marketplace and the ISV ecosystem to provide a good solution for the enterprise customers.
Bob: On the Expo floor, it was great to see a mix of networking companies in attendance to really be able to help customers understand how they're going to connect to the public cloud. This is really important. Our ESG research shows that one of the top impacts of public cloud networking on network strategies is to ensure a seamless data center and WAN links to the cloud from the on-premises location. And that's why it was important to see companies like Cisco, Juniper and Arista there, so they could talk about how they're going to enable seamless connectivity from the data center to those cloud environments and create hybrid cloud environments.
That same research also shows that organizations are trying to find increased or improved connectivity to cloud service providers. And fortunately for those who are in attendance, they could swing by and see companies like AT&T, Verizon, CenturyLink, Comcast, even China Telecom Americas was there. And there are also some SD-WAN vendors there. So VeloCloud stood out, and also Cisco, who had recently acquired Viptela. I think that's important because the SD-WAN technology's really shaping up to be a really important piece to the public cloud computing equation. AWS actually commissioned ESG to validate a number of the SD-WAN vendors to demonstrate the ease and value of connecting to the AWS cloud with SD-WAN. It was great to see the number of networking vendors at the show this year, and I expect next year we'll see even more as the network becomes far more relevant in enabling organizations to connect to the cloud.