Cloud News

CRN’s 2021 Products Of The Year

Wade Tyler Millward, Kyle Alspach

CRN staff compiled the top partner-friendly products that launched over the past year, then turned to solution providers to choose the winners.




IBM and its Red Hat subsidiary continue to advance the IBM Hybrid Cloud Platform with more capabilities around artificial intelligence and improvements to the RedHat OpenShift suite that powers the platform. A recent update to IBM’s Cloud Pak for Data can now provide answered distributed queries that are eight times faster than before, while IBM recently launched AutoSQL to automate data access, integration and management without the need for migration. Other recent updates have included the launch of Watson Orchestrate, a tool for business professionals with any coding skill level to automate scheduling, approvals, proposal planning and other routine tasks. Meanwhile, Red Hat updates have included a Red Hat Process Automation capability to enable deployed business decisions as containerized microservices in OpenShift and other cloud-native environments; the expansion of the Red Hat Insights predictive analytics offering to include OpenShift for use in multi-cluster environments; and general availability of the Red Hat OpenShift Service on Amazon Web Services.

Subcategory Winner—Revenue and Profit: HPE GreenLake

Hewlett Packard Enterprise unveiled GreenLake Lighthouse this year for running and managing workload-optimized solutions without waiting for new configurations. The company also introduced Compute Ops Manager to simplify infrastructure management from edge to cloud and expanded GreenLake Cloud Services for use with 5G, electronic medical records, financial services, data analytics and other uses.

Subcategory Winner—Customer Need: AWS Outposts

AWS Outposts is Amazon Web Services’ fully managed service for extending its infrastructure, services, application programming interfaces and tools to any on-premises environment or colocation space. The offering gained new support this year for Microsoft SQL Server, while users also gained the ability to make local snapshots of Amazon Elastic Block Store volumes for data residency and local backup requirements.

Finalist: Dell Technologies APEX Cloud Services

Dell Technologies APEX Cloud Services offer a secure, consistent and simplified IT experience for multi-cloud deployments. The offering enables the use of familiar solutions for compute, storage and data protection, while still providing access to the performance and features required by workloads across on-premises, colocation, public cloud or edge environments. Operations are unified by the self-serve APEX Console web portal.

Finalist: Lenovo TruScale Infrastructure Services

Lenovo TruScale Infrastructure Services recently received an expansion of available offerings, with new solutions for the platform built in partnership with VMware, Microsoft Azure, Intel and Deloitte. With the VMware Edge Cloud Solution, VMware edge cloud software—vSphere, vSAN and optional Tanzu and SD-WAN—runs on two ThinkSystem SE350 servers that are optimized for deployments at the edge.

Finalist: Microsoft Azure Stack HCI

Microsoft recently launched Azure Kubernetes Service on Azure Stack HCI for deploying containerized applications, and added an integration with Azure Defender for continuous threat monitoring. Azure Stack HCI also gained improved handling for high lookup volume and added support for Hyper-V’s Automatic VM Activation feature for Windows Server.

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