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AWS CEO Admits Some Workloads Will ‘Never Move’ To Cloud

During VMworld 2021, AWS’ new CEO Adam Selipsky says some workloads will never move to the cloud, which is why AWS is launching VMware Cloud on AWS Outposts.

With VMware Cloud on AWS Outposts becoming generally available this month, AWS CEO Adam Selipsky (pictured) conceded that, although more workloads are moving to the cloud, not all will migrate there.

“Despite that rapid movement to the cloud and the quick evolution that we’re seeing to the cloud, we know that our customers live in a messy world and they have, in many cases, thousands of applications in many different environments,” said Selipsky in a session with VMware CEO Raghu Raghuram during VMworld 2021 this week. “Part of that means they’ve got some things running in the cloud, then some things running in their own data centers and then lots of other permutations in the middle. What we’re trying to do together, VMware and AWS, is to help customers live in that messy world.”

Selipsky said over time, “more and more of those workloads will live in the cloud, but that will take time, and inevitably, some of them will probably never move over.”

[Related: VMware’s Tanzu Lead Over ‘Monolithic’ Red Hat Extends At VMworld, Says President]

AWS’ CEO touted his company’s new on-premises and data center as-a-service infrastructure offering, VMware Cloud for AWS, which will become generally available in VMware’s current third fiscal quarter which ends Oct. 29.

“I’m really excited now that VMware Cloud for AWS now includes Outposts. So now you can have AWS running in your own data center on a managed and maintained and patched basis for you—all with VMware as well. It’s just a great offering,” said Selipsky. “It’s the next horizon in what we’re delivering to customers together. I couldn’t be more delighted to be doing it.”

One top executive from a national solution provider who partners with Amazon as well as with infrastructure market leaders Dell Technologies and Hewlett Packard Enterprise, told CRN he was surprised to hear AWS admit publicly that not all workloads will move to the cloud.

“It’s just something they’ve always been tightlipped about saying forever. That some workloads will probably need to stay on-prem because it sort of goes against their motto, ‘Everything should and needs to move to the public cloud,” said the executive who has been an AWS partner for the past four years.

“It’s understandable why their attitude has changed,” he said. “They’re now admitting that, what he calls a ‘messy world’—which is this multi-cloud, hybrid cloud era we are in—some customer apps or workloads will stay on-prem. There’s just reasons to keep them on-prem [like] compliance, latency and I’m sure [Selipsky] didn’t mention pricing, but sometimes the cost of public cloud becomes a big issue with customers.”

Initially introduced in 2018, AWS Outposts takes direct aim at longtime servers, storage and hyperconverged infrastructure leaders like Dell Technologies, Lenovo of HPE.

The executive said VMware Cloud on AWS Outposts could be a market disruptor for Dell and HPE, “but it would take years” for AWS Outposts to make a “serious dent” in the global on-premises infrastructure market.

“It’s going to take a while for mainstream adoption of Outposts by enterprises who mostly still use HPE, Cisco, Dell, etc.,” he said. “But Outposts with solid VMware integration is a good way to try and get your foot in the door.”

VMware Cloud on AWS Outposts is a jointly engineered on-premises as-a-service offering, powered by VMware Cloud Foundation, that runs VMware’s Software-Defined Data Center software on dedicated Amazon Nitro-based EC2 bare-metal instances provisioned in AWS Outposts. It provides an integrated hybrid cloud environment with a unified control plane that provides access to VMware Cloud on AWS capacity and regional native AWS services.

AWS’ Selipsky said his company and VMware have built “a deep and trusted relationship.”

“We’ve got some really good and innovative services that we built together, but I honestly feel like we’re just getting going together. I think that VMware Cloud on AWS was a great start. I think evolutions that we’ve just recently announced like Outposts— VMware on the AWS Outposts—is really the exciting next steps on that journey together,” said Selipsky. “And we’ll continue to help customers along the way as they take that journey to their computing environments and their organizational changes they want to accomplish in the future.”

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