The Cloud is going to be vital to drive business across the channel in 2014.

Mar 13, 2014

IT spend is tight and most organisations are holding their budgets close to their chests as they approach yet another year of suppressed markets and wary spenders.

However, in spite of fear of little or no economic growth there are some sectors of the IT market that remain buoyant and offer the channel a positive route to strong sales growth in 2014. One such area is, of course, cloud computing. Once considered a vague concept with no palpable future, the growth and popularity of the cloud can no longer be denied.

According to Gartner (1), by 2016 this growth will become the bulk of new IT spend and private cloud will start to give way to hybrid cloud and nearly half of the larger enterprises will have hybrid cloud deployments by 2017.

Modern business is mobile and connected, business services are interactive and always on, and HP's understanding of these forces has led them to create a strong cloud computing initiative that can execute organisational objectives, says Lizelle le Roux, HP business unit manager at Tarsus Technologies.HP Converged Cloud offers planning, design and implementation services that can be adapted to suit any requirement or demand. The core of the HP cloud offering is scalability and flexibility.

HP¹s integration with the cloud is not limited to the HP Converged Cloud; the technology giant also ensures that its products and devices interact seamlessly with cloud-based solutions. From their own cloud platforms to integration with Google and iOS, HP has a range of products that can be slotted into the business without a hitch.

Organisations will find that, through HP¹s inclusion of cloud-based software into their printers, corporate users can now print from their tablets and phones whether they are on iOS, Android or Symbian. This ensures that the systems can be adequately secured with the right tools and services, it offers the requisite levels of mobility for the South African business to stay on track with the bring your own device (BYOD) trend and it ensures increased collaboration and efficiency in the workplace.

³Mobility in the workplace continues to be a key focus for IT and HP is determined to offer a range of products and solutions that meet these demands dynamically,says le Roux. Today they have cloud functionality built into their latest printer models which are supported through a robust channel infrastructure and Mobile Device Management (MDM). It¹s about giving the organisation tools that are collaborative, easy to use and completely flexible within their own cloud implementation.

In addition, HP has recently released the Enterprise Mobile Gateway which is designed to take on the security issues around BYOD and deliver a fairly impressive solution to the beleaguered IT department. Instead of the latter battling with legacy systems, unknown apps and the threat of the Shadow IT, the HP solution gives them the tools to take advantage of BYOD and work in a variety of ways. One such is in a cloud solution hosted by HP with the ability to build custom applications that fit corporate parameters.

The cloud is a phenomenon that is massively scalable and adaptable, says le Roux. It¹s good to know that HP has stayed on track with this trend and worked to deliver solutions to the channel that can really drive sales in 2014.