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Datto Expands Beyond BDR Roots to Offer Router Designed for MSPsDatto Expands Beyond BDR Roots to Offer Router Designed for MSPs

Backup and disaster recovery icon Datto has announced that it release a networking router this fall built for the managed services market -- designed to be serviced remotely. Here are the details of that and other announcements, plus an interview with CEO Austin McChord, from the company's user conference.


June 16, 2015

4 Min Read
Austin McChord Datto founder and CEO
Austin McChord, Datto founder and CEO

Datto is “gearing up” in the Big Easy. Here at the company’s annual partner conference in New Orleans, Datto, known for its backup and disaster recovery technology, introduced a “born in the cloud” router—the first piece of equipment of its kind in the industry, said CEO Austin McChord. The expansion into the router market blazes a new trail for the Norwalk, Connecticut-based company.

In an interview with MSPmentor, McChord said the new Datto Networking Appliance (DNA) is the first router designed specifically for the MSP market. All of the features, he added, were purpose-built to make it easier for MSPs to better support their customers. Among other things, the device provides 4G failover and gives technicians the ability to troubleshoot a failed Internet connection without having to be on site. As for taking on bigger hardware makers that specialize in Internet networking gear, McChord says his company has done its homework and is prepared to compete with any market rival.

Why a router?

“Our big thing is we strongly believe we can out innovate anybody. And we think that the router market is one that has not seen a lot of change. There hasn’t been a lot of product getting better. It’s been relatively the same, relatively flat, relatively stable. And we think that it’s time for that market to grow up or get more active because there is an enormous opportunity,” he told MSPmentor.

“The router is the single most important thing that sits between you and the Internet. It effectively defines your experience of the cloud. All of the great connectivity and all of the wonderful things that a router can do in the world don’t matter one iota if you have a bad [connection] between you and the cloud,” McChord added.

Currently under review by the FTC for radio spectrum compliance, the DNA router is expected to be available for general distribution this fall.

Introducing Datto Linux Agent

In addition to the DNA router, Datto is also announcing this week a Datto Linux Agent, which supports “persistent incremental backups, integrated storage, cloud replication, individual file restores and instant local virtualization,” according to the company. With the new technology, MSPs can now use their existing Datto devices to extend protection to Linux customers.

“This has actually been the top requested partner thing pretty much since we were created,” said McChord. “We’re pretty confident that it’s the best image-based Linux agent on the market today.” MSPs familiar with the company’s Windows back-up products will have zero problem using the new Linux Agent, he added.

Along with the DNA router and the Linux client, Datto is showcasing several other new products this week in New Orleans, where more than 500 MSPs and software partners are in attendance.

Backupify adds support for Office 365

Other new innovations include Datto Backupify for Office 365, which builds on the Backupify technology that Datto got when it acquired the cloud-to-cloud BDR provider in December 2014. With the new technology, MSPs can securely backup data stored in Microsoft’s Office 365. While no one expects that Microsoft’s servers to put customer data at risk, McChord said customers are clamoring for a solution that protects them from themselves. Many SaaS users, he noted, aren’t doing any backup of their cloud data, which is a risky practice given how easy it is for customers to destroy or erase their own data accidentally. The new Datto offering ensures that partners will be able to guarantee customers experience no data loss from “human errors, malicious deletions, hackers or viruses.”

Partnership with ownCloud

Also new this week: a new partnership with ownCloud, the company behind the popular open-source enterprise file sync and share software. Under terms of the arrangement, MSPs will be able to offer ownCloud secure file sync and share capabilities on all new and existing Datto SIRIS 1 and Datto SIRIS 2 devices.

Finally, Datto unveiled this week an improved partner portal that the company says makes it easier for partner to manage all of their devices and services, and interact with Datto. It will roll out in the fall. Also, the company continues to expand the marketing support that it provides to customers to help them attract new customers.

Datto’s announcements build on the company’s consistent track record of growth and profitability. In the last two years, MSP partners have generated more than one-quarter of a billion dollars in revenue reselling Datto products. The company’s goal is to lift that to $1 billion before 2018, McChord said.

International expansion

To drive that vision, the company is expanding its footprint in new markets including Australia and adding new partners in Europe. That said, McChord was clear that the company is focused on its core markets and mission, which is to support partners as they help customers embrace a “cloud first” lifestyle.

As for partners, Datto is confident that it is meeting their needs from an innovation perspective. McChord said that helping partners grow their revenue, which many, including Jim Turner, CEO of Hilltop Consultants, is grateful for.

“We’ve been a Datto partner for three years, and this is by far the most impressive list of product announcements we’ve ever seen come from Datto, especially at one time,” said Turner in a prepared statement. “I’m confident that the innovations Datto announced here today will have an impact on the growth of my business.”

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