HP, Intel Combine Forces For Server Appliance Products
- By Scott Bekker
is the first company to partner with Intel
to offer Intel’s line of NetStructure server appliances to its
customers. But HP is going even farther - starting next year, they’ll be
building their own appliances based on Intel’s NetStructure technology.
As reported by ENT earlier
this month, Intel announced that it had given up efforts to sell its line of
caching, management and hosting appliances through its own channels, and
decided to go through its traditional line of OEM partners.
HP has become the first of those. It will be mobilizing its
giant worldwide sales force to push the NetStructure line, in addition to
preparing its own line of appliances utilizing Intel plumbing. Expect to see
the HP appliances on the market as early as next March.
“The Intel technologies to be adopted by HP include Web hosting, e-commerce,
management, load-balancing, SSL and XML acceleration, and virtual private
networking (VPN) appliance products,” Intel said in a press release.
John Humphreys, research analyst with IDC,
thinks the partnership will be good for both companies.
“HP’s been prepping itself to get into the application
server market for a few quarters now. IBM, Dell and Compaq
have had product since the second quarter last year, and this brings HP up to
speed with them,” Humphreys says.
He says it’s also “good for Intel. They wanted to bring a
lot of attention to the space and cause the tier one guys [such as Compaq, IBM
and Dell] to sit up and take notice.” Humphreys says it’s unlikely that Intel
ever intended to sell directly to customers.
It also helps Intel’s cachet in the appliance market niche,
according to IDC system software analyst Dan Kusnetzky. “Intel’s been trying to
move forward” from just supplying chips for a number of years, Kusnetzky says.
“It’s good for Intel to get a big-name player to say they’re going to use Intel
Humphreys says that companies will look closely at the
NetStructure line, since it provides a wide range of appliances. “NetStructure
provides a really robust line, not just one or two or three different
functions. There are around a dozen different products. With the NetStructure
brand, [companies] can place appliances all throughout their infrastrucuture.”
The partnership will also likely help HP’s sagging sales.
The company sent out a memo in December asking managers to hold off on pay
raises for several months, cut back usage of temporary employees, and encourage
workers to use vacation time, moves expected to help HP save at least $140
million for the fiscal year.
HP, like nearly every other PC maker in the country, has
fallen short of revenue projections as the PC market continues shrinking.
Earlier this week, Merrill Lynch downgraded
HP’s stock to “neutral” from “near-term accumulate.” - Keith Ward
Scott Bekker is editor in chief of Redmond Channel Partner magazine.