Five Companies That Came To Win This Week

HP Makes Deal Registration Less Migraine-Inducing

Deal registration is critically important to the channel, but the systems vendors have put into place haven't been user friendly. This week, HP tackled this longstanding channel obstacle by streamlining its deal registration program, whittling down the number of steps VARs have to take to protect their hard-won business.

"This is one of the biggest areas that partners have been asking us to streamline," Matt Smith, director of marketing for HP's Solution Partners Organization told CRN in a recent interview. HP has also integrated the channel programs it has brought it over the course of 35 acquisitions in the past two years. Solution providers are encouraged by HP's efforts to remove the complexity from its channel business.

"Simplification is really the overall message," Romi Randhawa, president and CEO of Fremont, Calif.-based HPM Networks, told CRN. "HP has been acquiring a lot of companies and they’ve been doing a lot of specialization, and it's been tough for us to keep track of things."

Verizon Readies For All Out Cloud Offensive

Microsoft says it's "all-in" with cloud computing, but Verizon is going the other direction: The carrier is launching an all-out effort to boost its cloud services capabilities. Verizon is investing roughly $17 billion this year building, operating and integrating its networking and computing platforms, and a big part of that is earmarked for cloud computing.

Verizon is beefing up data center capacity in San Jose, Calif., London, and Canberra, Australia, and is also bringing new data centers online in Miami and Culpeper, Va. next year. It's also adding 5,500 additional server cabinets for enterprise users in its Paris, Dublin, London, Frankfurt, Belgium, Canberra, Hong Kong and U.S. data centers.

All of this is part of Verizon's push to offer private clouds through more than 200 global data centers connected to its Private IP MPLS network.

IBM Adds Blade Network Technologies To Cloud Arsenal

IBM this week acquired Blade Network Technologies, a Santa Clara, Calif.-based developer of data center switching technology, for an undisclosed sum. Blade's hardware and software routes data and transactions to and from servers, and its product lineup includes blade server and top-of-rack switches, as well as software that for virtualization and management of cloud computing applications.

IBM is serious about being a player in the nascent converged infrastructure market, and Blade will help optimize its servers for cloud computing, business intelligence and other workload-intensive tasks. IBM will also be in a better position as it competes with Cisco and HP for the hearts and minds of the data center market.

Samsung Turns Its Back On Symbian

Samsung is ending its support for Symbian and will shutter its Symbian developer resources and forums by the end of the year. Samsung joins Sony Ericsson in the exodus from Symbian, and will instead focus its development attentions on Android and Windows Phone 7. Heck, even Nokia is relegating Symbian to lower-end phones and using MeeGo for its N-series line of smartphones.

Symbian's rapid march into obscurity made Samsung's decision easy, but cutting ties with the past allows companies to focus their full attentions on the present. It's a case of addition by subtraction: Samsung has enjoyed big-time success with Android thus far and wants to marshal as much effort as it can to building more devices for the platform.

Synnex Targets Android For Future Growth

Google's Android OS has serious momentum behind it, and Synnex President and CEO Kevin Muraitold CRN this week the distributor sees Android powered tablets as "a huge market growth opportunity."

Synnex this week also topped Q3 sales and earnings estimates, but its 9 percent sales increase in Q3 was its lowest since Q4 of 2009. Murai said Synnex's growth -- between 13 and 14 percent -- is still outpacing that of competitors, but to keep this rolling, it'll have to place some bets on where things are going, and Android at this point looks like a pretty solid wager.