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HP Inc. Partners Lead Device-as-a-Service Charge

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Lynn Haber**Editor’s Note: Click here for our recently compiled list of new products and services.**

After piloting a Device-as-a-service (DaaS) program in Asia Pacific for about a year, HP Inc. channel partners worldwide can participate in the vendor’s new DaaS offering. In fact, HP’s DaaS go-to-market strategy is partner-led.

Today, 80 percent of HP revenue, both Hewlett-Packard Enterprise and HP Inc., is generated through channel partners, and by year-end the vendor expects to see that figure increase to 87 percent, according to Bill Avey, general manager and global head of the PS Services business at HP. So the company is making investments to enable partners to take the lead on DaaS, which today targets midmarket and enterprise customers, or about 300-plus seats.

HP Inc.'s Bill AveyHP’s DaaS, a per-device, per-month procurement model, increasingly fits with the business customer trend to own nothing while offering more flexibility in how IT dollars are spent. HP’s DaaS is a combination of devices, i.e. anything in the vendor’s device portfolio, such as desktops, notebooks, technical workstations, thin clients, mobility, and retail point-of-sales (POS) solutions.

“It’s a new world and we have to think about new paradigms to get the right users the right devices so that they can go out and be successful and productive,” said Avey. DaaS makes it easy for customers to know what to expect, secures a fleet of devices, and simplifies device management, he added.

HP DaaS combines with life-cycle services to offer procurement, configuration, deployment through asset recovery, data sanitization and environmentally responsible device recycling in addition to monitoring, managing, reporting and analytics – adding up to a proactive rather than reactive experience for businesses.{ad}

The as-a-service procurement model is a growth market where the guesswork is taken out from the business IT department of purchasing, deploying and managing different types of devices within the organization and also keeping them updated with new technology.

“The onus is transferred to the provider allowing IT to focus on other strategic priorities,” Anurag Agrawal, Techaisle CEO and analyst. Typically in a business, 74 percent of time is spent by IT managing devices. And, the device itself is losing importance as compute is shifting to the cloud, which means that device is a means and not an end, which is also resulting in ever declining growth rates of devices, he added.

What partners do need to know is that they can white-label the DaaS solution. Also, contracts will offer flexibility based on customer need and how much …

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… responsibility they want to retain in-house versus purchase. The contract price and terms will be put into a multiyear agreement, depending what the customer wants.

The DaaS program is also a multivendor offering meaning that competitor’s devices, and multivendor operating systems, could take advantage of the managing, reporting and analytics services offering. The DaaS solution could be a horizontal offering or a vertical offering, such as workstation as a service or thin client as a service, or POS.

So, for example, at The Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf, a Los Angeles-based HP customer, the DaaS solution is a retail POS service that outfits the company stores with an electronic cash register in addition to services that include equipment procurement, additional third-party peripherals, software that locks down the screen, deployment and life-cycle management.

HP isn’t the first vendor to offer device as a service, which in previous years went by other names, such as hardware-as-a-service (HaaS) or in some cases, leasing. British Telecom and Polycom also made recent announcements for device as a service. And in 2013, at the Ingram Micro Cloud Summit, the distributor announced a HaaS offering that featured nine pre-integrated bundles of HP and Lenovo laptop or desktop hardware. For many years, there have been channel partners who rolled their own DaaS offerings.

HP’s announcement can open up new managed-service opportunities for channel partners.

“The device-as-a-service offering could also substantially increase the margins and revenues for channel partners from a low margin business of selling devices,” Agrawal shared with us.

As of Nov. 1, the beginning of HP’s FY17, there will be a DaaS track within the Partner First Program. The vendor is working with partners to define exactly what the DaaS program will look like.

In the meantime, the DaaS program is live with pilot opportunities available for partners prior to the Nov. 1 launch of the DaaS track.


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