VMware Flexes Its Multicloud Muscle at VMworld 2021

The cloud computing vendor sees multicloud as the work-supporting model for at least the next two decades.

Kelly Teal, Contributing Editor

October 6, 2021

4 Min Read

VMWARE VMWORLD — Eighteen months into the pandemic, it’s clear that the old ways of working probably will never apply again. And the world couldn’t have succeeded in the shift to cloud and remote work without channel partners and other IT experts, said Raghu Raghuram, CEO of VMware, at Tuesday’s virtual VMworld 2021 event.

“It’s not a stretch to say that you keep the global economy humming,” Raghuram told attendees.

Underneath that hum, you can probably hear the words, “hybrid work,” “edge” and “multicloud.” These terms dominate IT conversation in the (hopefully) waning days of COVID-19. And they did so at VMworld 2021, too. In fact, VMware expects “multicloud,” in particular, to carry the day. The reason?


VMware’s Raghu Raghuram

“Multicloud is going to be the model we use for the next 20 years,” Raghuram said.

That’s because multicloud – the use of different brands of public and private cloud environments – “is about increasing applications velocity and innovation.”

Moreover, Raghuram said, multicloud arrangements let organizations take business resilience and transformation “to a whole new level.”

End users want to choose the best services to use from different clouds, he explained. At the same time, they do not want to get stuck, locked in with one vendor. Enabling a multicloud structure addresses both those needs, and it’s why VMware is placing such emphasis on the capability.

To that end, VMware at VMworld 2021 debuted a slew of new products and platforms with multicloud, especially, in mind. Yet VMware also is intent on helping organizations take advantage of edge computing and implement successful hybrid work. That all ties in with the company’s message that it supports “and,” rather than “or.” Read more in our slideshow.

“We are taking the products you know and trust and then taking their capabilities and expanding them for a multicloud world,” Raghuram said.

Digging Into the ‘Why’

One of the biggest debuts of the day came in the form of Cross-Cloud Services. The platform lets end users choose which services they need on Amazon Web Services, Google Cloud Platform, Microsoft Azure, IBM Cloud, Oracle and Alibaba. Components include a platform for building and deploying apps; cloud infrastructure; cloud management (for monitoring and addressing performance and cost); security and networking; and a workspace for employees from wherever they work.

“it’s about giving you the power to make your own decisions and control your own destiny,” Raghuram said.

Again, for VMware, much of that means a continued focus on enabling hybrid work. The vendor sees this trend as key to its multicloud success. Even as COVID-19 appears to be weakening somewhat, “hybrid work” has emerged as all the rage. In this approach to work, organizations support people either working from home or in an office, or sometimes flowing between the two. In fact, 66% of business decision makers are trying to figure out how to accommodate this change, according to Microsoft’s 2021 Work Trend Index.

With all that in mind, VMware spent much of the first day of VMworld 2021 staking its claim on both hybrid work and multicloud. It did so by delivering a flurry of announcements germane to edge computing (“The edge is emerging as the focus for a lot of new innovation,” said Raghuram), Tanzu (“We’re facing a developer experience crisis,” said Dormain Drewitz, senior director of product marketing for VMware Tanzu), zero trust (“Data is everywhere,” said Shawn Bass, CTO of end-user computing at VMware. “We must protect data and prevent the loss of sensitive information,  especially when accessing it from remote locations with few controls.”), SASE and more.

“Everything we do is designed to help you unlock the full value of multicloud to accelerate your business,” Raghuram said.

And not to fret: The channel will remain integral to VMware’s go-to-market strategy for the releases unveiled at VMworld 2021.

“We are going to continue to innovate at a furious pace,” said Sumit Dhawan, president of VMware. “Working alongside VMware is the most vibrant partner ecosystem on this planet.”

Want to contact the author directly about this story? Have ideas for a follow-up article? Email Kelly Teal or connect with her on LinkedIn.


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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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