Resellers Weigh Dual-Core Sales Opportunities

While the marketing talk strives to make dual-core technology sound like the solution for all problems, many integrators are not buying the hype.

Twenty-six percent of resellers surveyed by CRN last month said they felt dual-core based systems will have a significant impact on the server market over the next 12 months, which jibes with the fact that dual-core systems offer a significant price advantage over traditional multiple processor systems.

Fully leveraging dual-core technology requires consideration of software as well as hardware.

But bang for the buck is not always the most important element when deploying a server; in some cases, performance still reigns supreme. Performance concerns are echoed by 54 percent of respondents, who felt that dual-core only promises a moderate impact on the server market, while the remaining 20 percent felt the impact would be only slight.

But the hype surrounding dual-core is having an impact; 48 percent of solution providers said they felt that the server market would be impacted the most by dual-core systems. Only half as many (24 percent) viewed dual-core as the next big thing for engineering and CAD systems, a market the technology seems best suited for.

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To best leverage dual core, one has to consider the software being deployed. Nearly half of solution providers said that Windows Server 2003 offers the biggest potential for leveraging dual-core performance, while another 23 percent felt that Windows XP offers a better fit, showing that dual-core does indeed have a place on the desktop, not just the server. Only 10 percent felt that Windows Small Business Server 2003 offered any real opportunity for dual-core technology, which proves to be interesting because most SBS deployments are very cost-conscious and need a high-performance single server. Finally, 23 percent viewed Linux as a driving force for dual core, reflecting the fact that Linux has offered multithreaded, multiprocessor support for some time.

While the dual-core onslaught is sure to shake up the market, there is a lack of certainty among the channel players just where this will happen. It&s up to the manufacturers to define the opportunities and build a cohesive understanding of what may just become the next disruptive technology.