5 Companies That Came To Win This Week

The Week Ending Sept. 12

This week's roundup of companies that came to win includes Apple's blockbuster product debuts, Intel's next-generation processor announcements, a solution provider that focuses on disruptive technologies, a significant Hewlett-Packard cloud acquisition, and a vendor's efforts to bring WAN-as-a-Service to the channel.

Apple Debuts New iPhones, Watch, Pay System

This was probably the most anticipated product announcement of the year. Given that expectations were so ridiculously high, the fact that the new iPhone 6, iPhone 6 Plus, Apple Watch and Apple Pay System appeared to meet -- if not exceed -- those expectations marked a clear victory for Apple and CEO Tim Cook.

Cook called iPhone 6 and 6 Plus "the biggest advancement in the history of iPhone." And they were certainly well received by solution providers. More surprisingly, pre-announcement skepticism about the Apple Watch seemed to dissipate once people got a look at it. And with agreements in place with many leading banks and retailers, Apple seems better poised to succeed with Apple Pay where others have failed.

Oh, and U2 played a song.

Intel Launches Next-Generation Processors At IDF

Apple wasn't the only vendor demonstrating this week that it hasn't lost its technology mojo. At its Intel Developer Forum in San Francisco this week, Intel launched a stream of new processors to power everything from wearable devices to data center servers.

The announcements included the latest Xeon processors (known as Grantley) that boast as many as 18 cores and a 3X performance boost. The manufacturer also formally launched its Edison platform, a postage-stamp-size computer, and the vendor's next-generation Skylake processor.

Solution Provider Axis Focuses On Emerging, Disruptive Technologies

Under the traditional channel model, solution providers establish tight partnerships with a few major vendors and sell products that are firmly established in the marketplace. Axis Business Solutions is taking a different tack, focusing on emerging, disruptive technologies that the Portsmouth, N.H.-based solution provider believes give it -- and its customers -- a competitive edge.

Axis held its sixth annual customer summit in Maine this week where it highlighted its relationship with DataGravity, the startup developer of breakthrough data-aware storage appliances that's getting a lot of attention. While Axis partners with some major IT vendors, including Hewlett-Packard and Dell, its vendor roster includes such young companies as Aerohive, Mobile Iron and Veeam Software.

HP Steps Up Cloud Game With Eucalyptus Acquisition

Hewlett-Packard struck a deal this week to acquire Eucalyptus, a privately held startup that develops open-source software for building private clouds that support Amazon Web Services' APIs. Partners said the acquisition demonstrates HP's commitment to an "open" hybrid cloud strategy.

The addition of Eucalyptus' software to its portfolio will make it possible for customers to move workloads back and forth between AWS and private clouds built on HP's Helion line of OpenStack technology. Channel partners said that should create more sales opportunities around Helion products.

VeloCloud Launches Program To Offer WAN-as-a-Service Through The Channel

Networking startup VeloCloud launched its first partner program this week as it looks to drive sales of its WAN services exclusively through the channel. The move is part of the startup's efforts to reinvent the enterprise WAN by delivering branch infrastructure as a cloud service instead of through hardware appliances.

The new VeloCloud Partner Program is targeted at managed service providers and IT solution providers who can deliver hybrid branch WANs, cloud-based networking capabilities, and other managed services.