There are few technology changes that have been as disruptive as the public cloud. All aspects of the tech industry have been impacted in some way, but the hardware industry in particular has seen a major disruption. The advent of cloud hyperscalers has skewed the server, network, and storage markets. Suppliers can have an entire quarter made or ruined by the decision of a single hyperscaler to purchase new gear for a datacenter. By the same token, the cloud hyperscalers now have outsized influence over pricing, and can negotiate heavy discounts by purchasing at massive scale. Add in the fact that enterprise IT is shrinking, and traditional hardware companies are in a bit of a pickle.
Vendors like NetApp need to address the massive shifts in markets by developing fresh products and services that will appeal to enterprise customers in a post-cloud environment. Let’s look at some of the biggest shifts that have occurred due to the prevalence of public cloud.
- Low friction consumption of services
- Consumption based spending
- Capacity on demand
- Management of hardware and base systems
These shifts are all part of what public cloud offers to the consumer, and it is one reason that organizations have flocked to adopt it. While cost is often cited as a reason to move, the reality is that convenience, scale, and outsourced management are probably the most compelling features. How does a traditional hardware vendor become competitive in a landscape ruled by the new public cloud principles?
That is the cloud conundrum. NetApp has a possible solution.