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The Missing Link in the Software-Defined Data Center

Lately, there has been a lot of talk about the software-defined data center.  By increasing management flexibility and lowering server costs significantly through increased utilization of existing CPU and memory resources, server virtualization brought significant benefits to IT organizations.  But to complete the vision of the software-defined data center, both storage and networking need to be virtualized along similar lines. There has already been movement in the industry towards the network virtualization goal.  The recent $1.26 billion acquisition of Nicira by VMware was a huge step in that direction, and the agreement to buy Xsigo by Oracle back in July 2012... more »
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Skype Update Links Your Facebook, Windows Live with Metro UI

Skype released a new beta version of their chat platform, which they claim will help users reach more of their friends and family.  How?  It lets users sign in with their Microsoft Account (Windows Live ID) and/or Facebook account.  They’ve also added support for six new languages.  The beta version of Skype, 15.1, is already out, and can be downloaded here. So what’s new with this version of Skype?  It features a much simpler Skype UI for a fresh and clutter-free look.  It’s now easier to change your profile photo to a previous one you used, as they keep all your... more »
ROI Remains a Tough Challenge for CRM, Social Enterprise

ROI Remains a Tough Challenge for CRM, Social Enterprise

With the rise of social networks and participatory trends on the internet, the consumer has given way to setting up their social media strategy. Internet users are increasingly present in the media, where free speech abounds in favor of or against a brand, product, etc. To reach their target, acquire prospects and build customer loyalty while staying on budget, businesses whatever their size, are now effectively integrating social media into their marketing strategy. The question is no longer whether you need to be present on social networks but how good you are at managing social customer relationships (CRM). Awareness, Inc., a provider... more »
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Samsung's "Genius" Ad Fuels the War with Apple

Today’s mobile news roundup features: an extended Apple-Samsung war for consumers; AT&T claiming iPhone 5 demand is higher than previous model; Samsung to release Galaxy SIV in March 2013; and RIM snubbed by Yahoo!. Apple-Samsung war fueled by ad Samsung fueled their war with Apple when news got out that they’ll be putting up a new ad for the Galaxy SIII on newspapers that compares the iPhone 5 and the SIII.  The ad has this big header reading “It doesn’t take a genius,” and below, a comparison of the features of the devices. Of course, Samsung’s side was loaded with cool features that... more »
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iPhone 5 Pre-orders Sold Out: Try These Stores

Hours before Apple unveiled the iPhone 5, their online store went down with a "We'll be back" sign that cycles through different languages.  Aside from that AT&T’s site was also down but it features a countdown timer with “Excited? So are we! We’re counting down the minutes to the big event,” plastered on their site. So what was that all about?  It was a no brainer--it’s because they were doing some upgrades in preparation for the iPhone 5 launch.  This is something that usually happens when Apple unveils a new iPhone.  Remember last year when they launched the iPhone 4S?  Apple,... more »
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The Network is the Next Battleground, Says Brocade VP

Brocade's Tech Day is an annual draw for analysts in the networking space, and also an opportunity for Brocade to unveil a new product. Jason Nolet, VP of Data Center & Enterprise Network for Brocade, announced the new VDX Switch, the VDX 8770, at the company's event earlier this week. Nolet also touched on his thoughts on server virtualization and Openflow. According to Nolet, fabric technology has been in the lead for the past couple years, and Brocade was actually among the first to begin using this term.  They were also the first to ship out product. They now have VCS... more »
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Amazon Web Services Launches Start-Up Challenge

Amazon Web Services (AWS) has launched its annual Start-Up Challenge, which will award $100,000 in combined cash and credits to the winner. This is the sixth year for the competition which recognizes promising fledgling companies that develop their products on AWS. According the official announcement, the competition is open to: Individuals or sole proprietors who are at least 18 years old or the age of majority in their jurisdiction of residence and have the full legal capacity to participate in this Contest at time of entry; or Privately held businesses that have not generated more than $10 million USD in gross annual revenues and no more... more »
Coke Gets Social With Interactive Drinks Vending Machine

Coke Gets Social With Interactive Drinks Vending Machine

Tons of modern day gizmos and gadgets can claim to be powered by an embedded Intel Core i7 processor these days, but the latest device to carry one should raise a few eyebrows. I mean, seriously, an Intel chip in a coke vending machine? Apparently, that is the case, as Intel proudly showed off its new, interactive coke vending machine at the Intel Developer Forum last week. But why on earth does it need Intel’s most powerful microprocessor built into it? Surely, the machine doesn’t need that much computing power to dispense with a few soft drinks? Well, the answer is that this is... more »
Microsoft's Online Service Terms Spark New Privacy Concerns

Microsoft's Online Service Terms Spark New Privacy Concerns

Microsoft recently updated the terms for its Windows Live online services, and some of those changes have raised red flags regarding privacy. The new terms of service include a clause that allow sharing of user data across desktop and cloud services. The new Windows Live terms are similar to the changes Google made in March, which did not sit well with EU regulators. The Microsoft terms are scheduled to come into effect on October 19, 2012 and will give Microsoft the right to make use of user content to "provide, protect and improve Microsoft products and services." Essentially, any content you... more »
Strange Big Data: A World On The Move

Strange Big Data: A World On The Move

The UN reckons that more than 200 million people - approximately 3% of the world’s population - live outside of the country in which they were born. Given the complexity and magnitude of international migration, the issue has become a highly charged one for just about every single nation in the world. There are differing reasons why this is the case. On the one hand, developed nations are worried about the burden on their welfare systems, while many citizens of these countries are concerned that migrants will end up taking all of their jobs, as immigrants will generally accept a lower... more »

Premium Research

- Ralph Finos

A companion piece to Wikibon's Public Cloud Market Forecast 2015-2026, this research examines the revenue from SaaS, IaaS and PaaS vendors. The competitive environment surrounding the Public Cloud is in flux. SaaS remains turbulent with new entrants successfully gaining share and incumbent licensed software providers trying to develop SaaS offerings and reclaim leadership positions they have maintained for a decade or more. The IaaS segment leadership is beginning to crystalize as a function of scale, but PaaS is just formulating and finding its way. As such, enterprises need to be wary of which providers are winning and losing (and where), but more importantly what they themselves intend to accomplish with Public Cloud.

- David Floyer

Cataloging and automated policy management are the key enablers of a virtual flash world, where storage snapshots are both King and Knave. Combining cataloging and automated policy management is the only solution to enabling storage copy reduction in harmony is risk management and compliance. This enables and justifies an all-flash data center, enables data to be available quicker to the business and other IT functions, and drives greater business and IT productivity and responsiveness. CIOs and senior management should create a small team of the best and brightest, create an optimized all-flash virtual environment with a programmatically integrated catalog in a subset of the datacenter, and demonstrate the practicality and benefits of this environment to the business and IT.

- Stuart Miniman

VMworld has grown to be one of the largest and most important technology industry events. Wikibon has attended this event for many years and will have its largest presence this year as part of a double-set of theCUBE. Coverage will examine the broad and diverse ecosystem including storage, cloud, networking and much more.

- David Floyer

Wikibon believes latency storage vs. capacity storage is a key storage dimension, with different functional requirements and different cost profiles. Latency storage is found within the datacenter supporting more active applications, and in general has a high read bias. Latencies can vary from 1 millisecond down to a few microseconds; the lower (better) the latency the closer to the processor resources it is likely to be. It is also found for the metadata layer for capacity data. The boundary for latency storage will reduce down to 500 microseconds over the next three years. Capacity storage is found in archive, log, time-series databases for the Internet of things and many other similar applications. In general it is write-heavy. Latencies are generally above 1 millisecond, do not have to so close to the processor, and are suitable for remote private, public and hybrid cloud storage. Some parts of the capacity market place will have latencies as low as 500 microseconds over the next three years. Wikibon has added this dimension to the other storage dimensions projected, which include HDD vs. Flash, Hyperscale Server SAN vs. Enterprise Server SAN vs. Traditional SAN/NAS storage, Physical Capacity vs. Logical Capacity and SaaS Cloud vs. IaaS Cloud vs. PaaS Cloud. All these dimensions are projected for both Revenue and Terabytes. There is a strong correlation and interaction between the latency/capacity dimension and HDD/Flash dimension. Wikibon provides detailed breakdown of the storage projections for Premium clients.

- Brian Gracely

With the EMC Federation in transition, VMware needs to take a greater leadership role in delivering cloud services. VMware's ability to lead their customers transitions to Hybrid Cloud requires them to deliver a more robust, more agile vCloud Air platform.

- Brian Gracely

While the majority of Enterprise CIOs continue to have Hybrid Cloud near the top of their priorities, the solutions in the marketplace often fall short of expectations. Wikibon analysts look at the state of Hybrid Cloud from a C-Suite perspective.

- Ralph Finos

Maturity by industry is a function of customer and prospect skills, competitive drivers within the industry, the nature of the data in question as well as the complexity of the analytics required, and most importantly the problem that the prospect or customer is trying to solve. Identifying where customers are in their journey and helping them to reach the next level is key to vendor success.

- Ralph Finos

Both customers and vendors need to prioritize how they address adoption barriers. As with all emerging technologies, a full solution will often require extensive 3rd party participation, such as “data wrangling” and SQL data access tools. SQL data analysis offerings are maturing rapidly in the areas of application performance under greater user and data volume loads both from the Hadoop distribution vendors as well as 3rd parties. Other barriers, such as a skills gap across many roles, are more intractable. Smaller customers with fewer specialized practitioners in each role should include in their evaluations cloud-based solutions that are fully managed services.

- George Gilbert

Across all the primary roles involved in adopting Big Data applications, there are basic gaps in product maturity. However, IT leaders and practitioners should keep in mind that Big Data databases are part of a relatively immature ecosystems that requires advanced skills and integration technology in order to operate successfully. The ecosystem is evolving and maturing rapidly and there is a tremendous proliferation of technologies to augment early products.

- Brian Gracely

Wikibon Research has forecasted Public Cloud revenues from 2015 through 2026; with the expectations that 33% of all IT spending ($500B) will move to Public Cloud services within the next decade. The impact this will have on IT vendors and IT strategy will be significant as more applications focus on mobile and real-time data analytics.