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"It's very positive for Hitachi to enter into the unified computing marketplace," Datalink's Lidsky said. "We're seeing strong sales in this market. I think Hitachi's customers will want to look at alternatives from that vendor. Customers will drive the buying decision. The converged infrastructure market is not so crowded that customers won't not look at Hitachi-based solutions."
Ed Parolisi, vice president for infrastructure solutions, global partners, and alliances at HDS, said the Hitachi UCP solutions offer multiple opportunities for the company's solution provider partners.
While the Hitachi UCP Pro is completely integrated by HDS before shipping to customers, partners manage the final deployment at the customer site and deploy what Parolisi called the "last-mile" services.
With Hitachi UCP Select, solution providers can choose to build and deploy the solution, especially when Cisco servers are involved, as HDS is not reselling the Cisco servers, he said.
To offer the Hitachi UCP solutions, partners will need certifications and skill sets related to the customers' choice of operating system, hypervisor and applications, Parolisi said. However, HDS is adding a full suite of training, including storage, servers, networking and software, as part of its Hitachi Services Specialization Program, he said.
Eight new Hitachi UCP Pro and Hitachi UCP Select solutions based on a variety of mission-critical operations are available already, with two more slated to be ready to ship later this month. One other solution, based on virtual desktop infrastructure (VDI), is expected to be available by January, Chalaka said.