Sergey Nivens -

Dell World focuses on as-a-service and edge technology

Vendor Dell arms partners with Apex as-a-service tools to help customers gain flexibility

Dell Technologies has kicked off its World event with the themes of as-a-service and edge technology at the core of the messaging.

In his keynote, the firm’s chairman and CEO Michael Dell said that the reaction of the industry during the pandemic had underlined the importance of IT.

“Together, we prevented a complete societal economic meltdown – that isn’t hyperbole, it’s what we as technologists did for the world. It was the culmination of decades of work, combined with a burst of innovation, reinvention and re-engineering that has been incredible in its scope and speed,” he said.

He then talked about how the edge opportunity was expanding, with 75% of data expected to be generated outside of a traditional datacentre by 2025, compared to just 10% today. He also quoted numbers that are forecasting a $700bn capital expenditure (capex) spend on edge infrastructure in the next decade.

“That data will be generated in the real world at the edge, and to transform that data into outcomes will require real time analytics and intelligence,” he added.

When it comes to arming the channel with the tools to sell in edge environments, Dell is looking to its as-a-service offering, called Apex, as the answer.

Jeff Clarke, vice-chairman and COO at Dell Technologies, said that the firm had been evolving its managed services offerings and that Apex was the natural point to get to: “It aligns us even more with [customer] outcomes and results. As our conversation changes from speeds and feeds to experiences, insights and outcomes, [customers] are asking for a modern way to consume technology.”

Dell announced its Apex Data Storage Services to offer storage as-a-service (SaaS), cloud services and custom solutions, with the channel being given a console to help manage customer systems.

“We believe our partners are already at an advantage [with] their partnership of Dell technologies, given the depth and breadth of our portfolio, as well as the flexibility and the choice around multiple business models and how they engage with us,” said Akanksha Mehrotra, vice-president of Apex at Dell. “Apex expands this partner advantage, further to additional opportunity partnership and profitability.”

She added that Apex would give partners an opportunity to have a “continuous engagement model” with customers that would give them a chance to add other services and solutions into the mix.

Dell is making it attractive for partners to get involved with Apex, with up to 30% incentives on “turnkey outcome-based offers”, which Mehrotra said was the highest in the industry.

"Partners are a key route to market for us, both for current as well as future as-a-service offers. We’ve got an active partner enablement plan in place, and we’ve been soliciting input from partners,” she said.

Dell’s Apex offerings

  • Apex Data Storage Services – gives customers options around storage consumption with transparent pricing and no coverage fees.
  • Apex Cloud Services – gives storage and networking resources to support whatever flavour of cloud the customer wants to use, with the idea is to simplify and streamline operations through automated lifecycle management.
  • Apex Custom Solutions – provides options for partners to provide a wide part of the portfolio, including servers, storage, data protection, hyperconverged infrastructure as-a-service.
  • ApexConsole – a self-service, interactive console to help manage customer systems.

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