IBM Leans on Partners to Bring Cloud Satellite Services to Life

Big Blue took the much-anticipated hybrid cloud platform out of beta on March 1.

Kelly Teal, Contributing Editor

March 1, 2021

3 Min Read
Communications satellite in space

IBM on Monday sent Cloud Satellite into general orbit, and is looking to the channel to help expand its horizons.

Big Blue first announced Cloud Satellite last year. It’s a hybrid cloud as a service platform that operates in any environment — on any cloud, on premises or at the edge. (Think of it as a sort of competitor to Amazon Outposts.) IBM took the product from beta to general status on Monday. The first two supported services will be Cloud Pak for Data and OpenShift as a Service.


IBM’s Evaristus Mainsah

“By launching cloud services to different locations, while the operation remains with a public cloud provider, clients are positioned to more quickly support market expansion, create richer customer experiences and analyze data across locations,” Evaristus Mainsah, general manager of Cloud, Cloud Pak, & Edge Ecosystem, wrote in a blog.

At the same time, IBM said it’s working with more than 65 partners who are building apps and capabilities for Cloud Satellite. Those efforts, Mainsah said, “will help scale IBM Cloud Satellite’s open architecture across environments, accelerating innovation for clients. Together with partners, we can offer transparency and flexibility to help enterprises run workloads where it makes the most sense for their business — whether that is public cloud, their data center or at the edge.”

Right now, those 65 IBM partners are working to offer services from the IBM Cloud Catalog enabled for Cloud Satellite. Tanium, for example, is expanding its operations, security and risk management portfolio.

“We are also helping partners deploy enterprise-ready software certified for Red Hat OpenShift, and use storage, networking, edge and other capabilities on IBM Cloud,” Mainsah said.

Meantime, ADVA, AT&T, Cisco, Dell Technologies, F5, Intel, NetApp, Portworx by Pure Storage and are heads down in projects, too. They each aim to offer storage, networking and server solutions to clients who want to deploy IBM Cloud Satellite on existing infrastructure.

“We support product testing and configuration to help onboard partner solutions to IBM Cloud Satellite to confirm they are optimized for the platform,” Mainsah said. “Working with these partners, we can provide a choice of infrastructure that makes it possible for clients to run workloads in their preferred location.”

Mainsah added the IBM also is bringing the Edge Application Manager to extend deployment of containerized applications from IBM Cloud Satellite locations to far edge devices.

Expanding Partnerships

Meantime, IBM has further expanded its scope with service partners including HCL Technologies, IBM Global Technology Services (NewCo), Prolifics, Tata Consultancy Services and Tech Mahindra. Those collaborations will result in migration and deployment services.

IBM has also teamed with enterprise technology firm Lumen. Lumen is using its Edge Compute platform to deliver IBM Cloud Satellite. That lets customers run data-intensive applications such as video analytics across their environments, with low latency. IBM said hosting on Red Hat Open Shift via IBM Cloud Satellite from a Lumen edge location means cameras and sensors, for instance, can function in near real-time.

IBM touts Cloud Satellite as bringing a secured, unifying layer of cloud services across environments, no matter where data reside. For one thing, this addresses data privacy and sovereignty requirements, IBM said. For another, industries from telecom and financial services to health care and government now can take advantage of reduced latency, the company added.

“Workloads related to online learning, remote work, telehealth services and more can now be delivered with increased efficiency and security with IBM Cloud Satellite,” IBM said in a press release. “As workloads shift to the edge, IBM Cloud Satellite will help clients deliver low latency, while still enabling them to have the same levels of security, data privacy, interoperability and open standards found in hybrid cloud environments.”

IBM manages Cloud Satellite for end users.

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About the Author(s)

Kelly Teal

Contributing Editor, Channel Futures

Kelly Teal has more than 20 years’ experience as a journalist, editor and analyst, with longtime expertise in the indirect channel. She worked on the Channel Partners magazine staff for 11 years. Kelly now is principal of Kreativ Energy LLC.

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