In this ESG On Location Video, ESG's Mark Peters reports on his impressions from HPE Discover London 2016, and also interviews Ivan Iannaccone, Director of Product Management for HPE.
Announcer: The following is an ESG On Location video.
Mark: Welcome to Docklands in London's East End, and this week it has been HPE's Discover event. I can't think of any more singular perfect place to put this event because you look around this place and you cannot imagine more of a selection. In this case, it's transport infrastructure but hybrid infrastructure. There's trains and cars and boats. There's even a cable car and an airport. So, in terms of hybrid infrastructure, it's a perfect place to put a company that wants to be at the middle of IT hybrid infrastructure.
HPE is keeping with the same for transformation zones that it's talked about before. So it's not just transformation, it's protection, it's empowerment, and it's enablement. What's the relevance of all that? Well, whether you like the phrase or not, one of the things we heard from the main stage was, "a world where everything computes." So you don't just need enormous breadth, you need depth as well. You gotta cover all these four things, and you've got to have a wide range of capabilities within them. We understand that HPE has a lot of stuff, and like all these big systems companies, it's really hard to get your arms around everything.
So talking of not being able to get your arms around things, let's talk about something very futuristic or rather futuristic and something very practical. Now, here's the Machine. Not really the Machine. This is not shown actual size. But in terms of where HPE and where the market might go, this was something that was talked about a lot at the show and is very interesting for the future of IT in general. With massive non-volatile memory, memory-driven compute if you like, with in-built security, a kind of building block approach to how we might do IT in the future. The Machine has now started proper testing. It actually works. There were some various elements of it being demonstrated at the event.
I also wanted to concentrate on something very tangible and very now. So, in a moment I'm gonna hand it over to Ivan Iannaccone, who is product marketing manager on the storage side of the business, and he's gonna talk about something called Flash Now. This is something which is very interesting because whilst it's based on an area I love, storage, and it's very contemporary, it also has elements of the cloud and the changes in consumption models that are so important now. So I asked him to explain very briefly what it is and why HPE has done it.
Ivan: What we've noticed is that our customers are very interested in all flash, while at the same time they're also tempted by the economics of the cloud, in particular, public cloud. So with this initiative, we're able to give customers the best of both. We're able to give customers all the flexibility and the speed of on-prem infrastructure, while also having a utility model that is very similar to what you can have with the public cloud.
We offer this in two kinds of flavors. One is pay as you go model, but we also have a service agreement, and that's something more as a pay as you grow that has got a bit more flexibility and also that elasticity that you would have with a public cloud offering. This is not only storage, it can also extend to the fabric, so customers can buy in not only the all-flash array but also part of the infrastructure. And of course, with all flash, we also want customers to rethink their data protection, and this is why for a little more they can also obtain a data protection strategy with Recovery Manager Central and our StoreOnce solution.
Mark: You could take the implicit message from what Meg was saying on stage, that, "Hey, look, we're HPE, and we're gonna do less now because of the spin-off merger things going on. But by doing less, we can provide you more." Now, that sounds contrarian and it's a very tight line to read, but it actually makes sense. If you can do less of the technology solutions but they're the right technology solutions, and in the meantime, you can drive up business value, then I think that's very much where the hybrid-focused HPE wants to be.
I don't think there are many companies with the degree of hybrid scale that we've seen around us at this show and technical chops that even have a chance to do that. As long as HPE can drive up the degree to which it provides orchestration as it gradually drives down the degree to which it relies on certain levels of technology and focuses on the good ones, then I think absolutely this is a place to watch.