NetApp UK Launch Next-Generation HCI

This week, NetApp announced the availability of its Hyper Converged Infrastructure (HCI) offering to UK businesses during a media roundtable. The solution, provided through Softcat and SCC as part of NetApp’s authorised UK partner network, harnesses the power of data management and facilitates digital transformation.

Hyper-convergence brings together computing and storage with a software-defined layer, meeting the pressures applied by today’s app heavy usage – a product of the growing cloud economy. Giving businesses the resilience and control they crave over their data, HCI enables organisations to outperform other data centres.

Another key driver for the increased demand in converged infrastructures is simplicity, driven by businesses favouring automation for ease of use and scalability. NetApp’s HCI solution plugs a huge gap in the market, by minimising the margin for human error and down-time, while enabling the scalability essential for businesses with growing data sets. With this, businesses can adopt a software-defined cloud strategy, utilising the best of a multi-cloud approach to support their digital transformation efforts.
For over a third (36%) of UK IT decision makers surveyed by NetApp, *digital transformation is the primary concern when it comes to their purchasing and resourcing decisions The majority of UK businesses (80%) are already using HCI, and 11% say they do not use HCI yet but are planning to deploy HCI in the next 12 months, indicating a rapidly emerging market. This is backed up by IDC research, demonstrating a strong move in the enterprise towards the modernisation of data centres, with a strong cloud transition strategy to deliver on businesses’ DevOps needs.

Archarna Venkatraman, Research Manager, IDC: “NetApp’s HCI solution will create excitement among its key customer accounts. IDC believes NetApp’s decision to use SolidFire’s technology as the foundation for HCI is proof that it is betting more on the new generation of storage technologies that enable digital transformation. Its Data Fabric integration shows that NetApp can weave its hybrid cloud and data movement vision across its solutions, giving all customers the opportunity to progress seamlessly in their hybrid IT plans. Lastly, its flexible scalability features suggest that NetApp did not want to hurry and launch a “me too” HCI product, but to truly address the cost challenges that HCI customers face. As the vendor celebrates 25 years in the industry, it is reinventing itself as a data enabler, and its engineering capabilities are steered in that direction.”

Tim Pitcher, Vice President, NGDC, NetApp: “We are in the middle of a massive shift, away from traditional hardware based infrastructures. Our acquisition of SolidFire was a consolidation of our move into this evolving industry. With the launch of NetApp HCI, we are bridging the gap between CIOs and architects looking to realise their cloud ambitions. What really sets us apart is the data management layer – it is data fabric ready. It is our partners who are driving the solution home as customers seek the best and most cost effective cloud services.”

Will Carver, SCC: “The move towards automation is where the market is going, and multi-cloud solutions are critical to this. HCI is a compelling solution and now we can really start answering customer questions on how best to keep business operations running and how best to support them through digital transformation. This is a solution that can be applied to all customers. It is ready and suitable for a broader market, not just smaller businesses that may benefit from the data management features and automation.”

Tim Jeans, Softcat: “Simplicity is essential for today’s customers, and it is vital that NetApp use the HCI solution to help reduce complexity. The addition of the HCI solution really adds to the breadth of NetApp’s portfolio, we will continue to drive conversations with our customers in terms of how they can optimise their architecture with a focus on enabling the power of digital transformation.”

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David Dungay

Editor - Comms Business Magazine