Dell Technologies Kicks Off $1 Billion IoT Venture

Tons of Cash

In a big strategic kickoff, Michael Dell, chairman and CEO of Dell Technologies, this week announced the company’s strategic vision for IoT.

It includes a $1 billion investment in IoT R&D over the next three years; a new Dell Technologies IoT division; a new “distributed core” computing model; a new IoT-specific product, lab and partner program; and artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML) technology that will work in concert with IoT infrastructure. 

Ray O’Farrell, executive vice president and chief technology officer (CTO), VMware, will head up the new IoT division, as general manager. He’s responsible for orchestrating the development of IoT products and services across the Dell Technologies family.  

“We’re positioning Dell Technologies to be our customers’ best, most trusted partner in the journey toward our collective digital future,” said Dell. “We created Dell Technologies to combine the innovations of Dell, Dell EMC, Pivotal, RSA, Secureworks, Virtustream and VMware. And, if you look at the Internet of Things, it’s a logical place for Dell to play, to lead and to win,” he added. 

CloudTech1's Rick Beckers

CloudTech1’s Rick Beckers

Putting the marketing hype aside, Rick Beckers, president and CEO of CloudTech1, a cloud master agent, MSP and Dell partner, acknowledges that the Dell IoT news is exciting and will have wide-ranging implications for the channel.

“Anytime a big vendor like Dell, Cisco, Microsoft, AWS, the top-tier vendors, make an investment of this size in something that is right up our alley, as it pertains to channel partners, it’s exciting. When you see a vendor willing to invest $1 billion dollars in technology, it validates that this is something partners need to get involved in and up to speed on,” he told us. 

Beckers is a speaker on the IoT circuit and a subject-matter expert (and a Channel Partners advisory board member), often addressing partners on the importance of building an IoT practice. He notes that every validation of IoT by vendors makes it easier for partners to have discussions with clients, colleagues and other people about IoT.  

One of the core pieces of Dell’s multifaceted IoT announcement is the IoT division, whose key role is to determine and direct the future of IoT for Dell Technologies.

“In that process, we plan to deliver unified solutions and leverage the assets that we have across all of Dell Technologies; we plan to focus on building and partnering with the broad ecosystem of partners reflecting the diversity of real-world IoT solutions, and we want to drive a unified go-to-market, making it easy for customers to consume these technologies, products and services. And, lastly, we’ll build new products to drive and determine what is the future of IoT,” said O’Farrell.  

Also vital in Dell’s announcement is the new distributed model for computing, and more specifically, a distributed core that focuses on the real-time processing of information. 

“We’re also going to need a layer of computing power that’s near the edge, and we call this the distributed core. This is a new generation of localized, hyperconverged infrastructure that will handle real events in real time. This emerging highly distributed compute model is the basis of …

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