There are always a raft of announcements at Microsoft's worldwide partner conference but one that stood out last month was the launch of the Surface as a Service programme.
The initial kick-off was launched in Europe with ALSO with Microsoft stating that the intention was to expand the number of partners that would be offering the same managed services approach.
The scheme is available to Cloud Solution Providers who are also authorised Surface distributors and provides a managed service offering that can be taken out through resellers to users.
In a blog post that coincided with the launch of the programe last month Yusuf Mehdi, corporate vice president, Windows and Devices Group at Microsoft, stated that the Surface was having a real impact in the business market.
"In the past year, the Surface business has grown from generating $1bn in revenue in a year to $1bn in revenue per quarter," he wrote.
"With our growing portfolio, we are creating not just great devices, but breakthrough categories that open up a world of new opportunities for partners to build capabilities in new areas, and to create solutions and services for customers. This year, we are investing in programs that increase partner revenue and profitability," he added.
Just a month later Ingram Micro has responded to that move and announced it is launching its own version of the Surface as a Service offering.
Surface as a Service
When Microsoft unveiled the programme at WPC it was designed to be available to Cloud Solution Providers, who are also Surface authorised distributors, who could offer Surface devices through a managed service, alongside managed cloud services, Office 365, Windows 10, and relevant ISV software. The promise of the concept was that it would provide flexibility, faster device refresh and ensure that customers had access to the latest greatest Surface and cloud software that Microsoft could offer.
The distributor will be able to offer resellers in the UK the chance to provide Surface and the Microsoft suite along with the chance to take advantage of leasing options that should make it an easier decision for users.
Brian Windsor, senior business manager for Microsoft at Ingram Micro, said that it would be able to lean on its knowledge of the vendor's software and hardware products.
"This offering will permit our resellers to assist their customer’s transformation to digital with ease. What’s more, we have strived to build our leasing options with recurring business in mind in order to maintain longevity of customer investment for our resellers," he said.