VMware Partner Exchange: Will Virtual Desktop Integration (VDI) Steal the Show?
This week’s VMware Partner Exchange conference in Las Vegas has attracted more than 4,000 virtualization partners — including VARs, IT service providers and technology partners. VMware has unveiled several new programs and solutions competencies — some of which seek to help partners virtualize mission-critical applications like Microsoft Exchange, Oracle and SAP, according to VMware VP of Partner Strategy and Operations Doug Smith. But The VAR Guy wonders: Will VDI (Virtual Desktop Integration) momentum steal the VMware show?
Among the buzz today:
1. VMware has introduced three new solution competencies, including Virtualization of Business-Critical Applications (VMCA, available now), Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS, now) and Management (late Q1 2012). The VBCA competency aims to help partners with Exchange, SQL Server, Oracle and SAP virtualizations service. The IaaS effort aims to help partners build private and public clouds more rapidly. Plus, Management will reward partners that help customers to mange virtual and cloud environments.
Smith says customers sometimes stop short of virtualizing their most important applications. Without proper education and certification, the thought of moving Oracle, for instance, into a virtualized environment can potentially intimidate customers and partners alike. The VMCA effort aims to eliminate those hesitations.
2. Money Matters: In a sign that VMware still sees plenty of profit margin opportunities for partners, the company has also introduced new incentive programs that can potentially enable partners to earn backend bonus rebates.
3. Consulting and Integration Partner Program (CIPP): Here, VMware is seeking to empower boutique integrators as well as large integrators, Smith says. Separately, there are also enhanced programs for small and medium businesses, Smith says, to further expand VMware’s footprint beyond the enterprise.
4. Oh, and About VDI: VMware says more than 215,000 individuals took VMware Partner University training in 2011. Dig a little deeper and you’ll see that training for desktop virtualization (or VDI) grew 41 percent to more than 6,200 individuals.
The VAR Guy is intrigued because the desktop virtualization training goes far beyond virtualizing multiple operating systems on a single desktop. Smith says the training does, indeed, prepare partners to virtualize desktop and mobile apps up onto a centralized server. The VDI trend is accelerating amid the BYOD (Bring Your Own Device) boom, because end-users want anywhere, anytime access to all of their desktop applications from their personal devices.
Smith notes that he has used his own notebook for more than four years — proof positive that the BYOD trend has even impacted large enterprises like VMware.
That’s all for now from VMware Partner Exchange. The VAR Guy will offer more insights as more trends emerge at the show.