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Dell steps up retail edge support, flags channel opportunity

Vendor introduces more offerings for the retail sector, with UK channel boss urging partners to take a look at the market

Dell has flagged the opportunity for its channel to support the retail market as customers in that sector continue to adapt to greater edge environments.

The vendor has expanded its edge solution range targeting retailers to help those looking to use more technology to make customer experiences smoother and checkout speeds high.

Offerings that channel partners can now take out to retail customers include Dell Validated Design for Retail Edge, Customer Solution Centers Innovation Labs and the latest version of its open source network operating system, Enterprise SONiC Distribution.

The vendor quoted a recent report from 451 Research which forecast that growth in the retail market would continue, with 77% of firms in that sector expecting to increase edge deployments significantly in the next two years.

“Retailers are increasingly relying on IT technologies and data at the edge to offer more personalised and intelligent customer experiences that drive better business outcomes, dramatically accelerating the need for retailers to bring siloed technologies together,” said Gil Shneorson, senior vice-president of edge solutions at Dell Technologies.

“We are helping retailers easily consolidate these technologies so they can analyse data where it’s created, make faster decisions and deliver positive experiences for in-store shoppers and employees.”

For the Dell channel, the growth of investment in edge solutions by retailers underlined that this was a vertical that partners should be focusing on.

“The shift to the edge by retailers provides a massive opportunity for channel partners,” said Rob Tomlin, vice-president UK channel at Dell Technologies. “Retailers often express concerns and look to the channel to help them understand how best to manage their infrastructure across physical stores, datacentres and the cloud.

“The industry is actively looking to technology and data insights to improve shopping experiences, from optimising product placement to helping avoid unnecessary queues in-store. By offering IT and data management through a single, unified fabric, partners can now confidently recommend a solution that will fit within the retailer’s existing architecture and be suitable for their future needs.”

Dave McCarthy, research vice-president, cloud and edge infrastructure services at IDC, said there was an opportunity for well-designed edge technology deployments to make a real difference.

“Retailers have one chance to deliver a positive in-store experience, and they have to balance this with helping to ensure the right inventory, health of their employees and customers, security of the store and more,” he said.

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