Tag Archives: Apple

SourceCast: Episode 51: Watching your health

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This week news broke that Motorola is going to stop making smart watches and Peeble is being purchased by FitBit. What happens to the utopian medical data scneario when companies stop making these devices?

Photo: S Zolkin

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SourceCast: Episode 47: Technology Ecosystems

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This week I open my home up to listeners as I discuss the issues with personal technology ecosystems in an ever-connected world.  If technology can be so complicated for home use, imagine what large enterprises have to deal with.

Bonus: Since Amazon Echo vs Google Home was a major topic this week, here is a great write up on what both devices can and cannot do.

Photo: Dave Meier

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Supplier Report: 8/27/2016

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Storage was a hot topic this week. IBM introduced new, more affordable offerings which resulted in a copious amount of articles.

Oracle’s legal battles are keeping them in the news. Their battles with Oregon and Google are still going and growing in complexity.  HP is also getting sued for age discrimination.

Apple purchased personal health data company Gliimpse and Microsoft purchased AI scheduling tool Genee.

IBM

  • Is Watson Smart Enough To Breathe Life Into IBM?

    White believes that given IBM’s relative absence in the Enterprise SaaS solutions market, the deal is not likely to run into anti-trust roadblocks. He feels Workday’s growth in the SaaS space will complement IBM’s aim to provide a flexible cloud structure and help establish a noteworthy footprint in the space. Drexel Hamilton has a Buy rating and a 12-month target price of $186 on IBM. The stock closed at just above $159 in trading yesterday.

    http://www.forbes.com/sites/qineqt/2016/08/25/is-watson-smart-enough-to-breathe-life-into-ibm/#6b9462464cf9

  • IBM launches flash arrays for smaller enterprises, aims to court EMC, Dell customers

    The company is also aiming a migration program designed to poach customers from the likes of Dell and EMC. IBM’s “Flash In” migration program is carried out by its various partners. Via Flash In, IBM is looking to integrate its systems with storage rivals or replace them.

    IBM launched the Storwize V7000F and Storwize 5030F as mid-range and entry level flash systems. The systems come with Spectrum Virtualize, which is software designed for data compression, provisioning, and snapshots across various systems.

    http://www.zdnet.com/article/ibm-launches-flash-arrays-for-smaller-enterprises-aims-to-court-emc-dell-customers/

  • IBM looks to take advantage of Dell EMC ‘disruption’

    Channel players not already involved with IBM are also being invited to the party. “Business partners looking to add IBM as a strategic vendor will find a set of comprehensive benefits that compare very favourably to what they may experience today,” said IBM.

    Up to 80 percent of IBM all-flash storage is sold by IBM Business Partners. “The IBM Flash In initiative will amplify the company’s all-flash offensive to help Business Partners reach new clients not currently served by IBM, and clients who may face potential disruption if there are product portfolio integrations with Dell and EMC,” the vendor said.

    http://www.channelbiz.co.uk/2016/08/23/ibm-looks-to-take-advantage-of-dell-emc-disruption/

  • IBM Named a Leader in Gartner’s Magic Quadrant for its Flash Storage Solutions

    IBM’s position as a leader comes after it announced the expansion of its FlashSystem portfolio, including DeepFlash andStorwize products, to help clients more quickly extract value from data for competitive advantage. Among the 380 patents that differentiate IBM’s flash products and services are its FlashCore and MicroLatency technologies. Clients rely on these technologies to quickly access the mounting volumes.

    http://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/ibm-named-a-leader-in-gartners-magic-quadrant-for-its-flash-storage-solutions-300317910.html

  • It’s time for all-flash says IBM, but IT chiefs won’t necessarily agree

    “As long as your working set size is within your available SSD [in a hybrid flash setup] then everything happening, on for example SQL Server, will be fine. The only time you need all-flash is if you have a large number of SQL datasets that you need access to; in effect requiring random access.”

    He added: “Far too many people see it as a panacea but it’s a pointless way of storing lots of data.”

    http://www.computerweekly.com/blog/StorageBuzz/Its-time-for-all-flash-says-IBM-but-IT-chiefs-wont-necessarily-agree

Oracle

  • Is Oracle Funding an Anti-Google Group?

    The company has stated that it is has funded the Google Transparency Project, which according to its website, “is a research initiative of the Campaign for Accountability, a 501(c)3 project that uses research, litigation and aggressive communications to expose how decisions made behind the doors of corporate boardrooms and government offices impact Americans’ lives.”

    https://www.thestreet.com/story/13680655/1/is-oracle-funding-an-anti-google-group-tech-roundup.html
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  • Why Google Needs to Win the Android Case Against Oracle

    So it’s important that these APIs remain neutral so companies can’t fleece the world at large every time they are used. Media reports indicate that courts have thus far ruled in favor of maintaining this neutrality of APIs. And that’s exactly why the Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF) has repeatedly filed amicus curiae (friend/impartial advisor to the court) briefs so the courts hold that APIs aren’t copyrightable and to prevent Oracle from monetizing the Java API through its acquisition of Sun.

    And in fact, the case revealed that it was Sun’s practice to allow companies to freely use Java APIs. Sun’s strategy in those days was to use this approach to extend Java’s reach as far as possible so more developers would build on it. The idea was that once the ecosystem gathered momentum, it would help Sun sell other products.

    https://www.zacks.com/stock/news/228742/why-google-needs-to-win-the-android-case-against-oracle

  • Oracle v. Oregon: Round 1 of Lawsuit Goes to State

    Brown and her team denied any agreement had been reached, and the legal battle continues. One of the first decisions in the case was handed down this week in Oregon’s favor. Oracle had asserted that emails were withheld in a way that violated public record laws, but the judge left little doubt as to his decision, saying “Oracle is wrong, both on the law and the facts.”

    http://www.investopedia.com/stock-analysis/082516/oracle-v-oregon-round-1-lawsuit-goes-state-orcl.aspx

Microsoft

  • Microsoft announces free Windows Server licenses when migrating from VMware

    To make more VMware customers switch to Hyper-V, Microsoft is announcing a new VMware migration offer where customers can get Windows Server Datacenter licenses for free when they buy Windows Server 2016 Datacenter and Software Assurance migrating from VMWare. From September 1, 2016, through June 30, 2017, customers who switch from VMware to Hyper-V can avail this offer. Basically, customers has to pay only for Software Assurance which provides benefits including new product version rights, deployment planning, technical and end-user training, support, and a unique set of technologies and services.

    http://mspoweruser.com/microsoft-announces-free-windows-server-licenses-migrating-vmware/

  • Microsoft buys AI scheduling tool Genee to make Office 365 smarter

    The app works by being CCed in emails, and using natural language processing to parse the contents of the email to understand the key requirements for the meeting — and then automatically sending out a meeting invite on your behalf. So it’s arguably an early example of the AI-powered chatbots now springing up all over the place. There are a set of standard commands Genee understands by default but users can also create their own custom commands.

    Microsoft notes the tool is “especially useful for large groups for when you don’t have access to someone’s calendar”. Genee’s co-founders, Ben Cheung and Charles Lee, “plan” to join the company, it adds.

    https://techcrunch.com/2016/08/22/microsoft-buys-ai-scheduling-tool-genee-to-make-office-365-smarter/

  • The marriage of Microsoft and Linux

    What’s changed for Microsoft and open source in recent years is Microsoft has refocused on solving both its own and customers’ business problems. That means, first, Linux is treated as an equal to Windows. “Microsoft actually uses a lot of Linux in-house. It’s no longer everything has to be run on Windows internally.” Microsoft is doing this because “We’re solving business problems and we’re very pragmatic.”

    http://www.zdnet.com/article/the-marriage-of-microsoft-and-linux/

Storage

  • 5 Ways the Dell Purchase of EMC Will Benefit VMware

    Simplification of the hardware and software stacks. Although the cloud will be a huge part of the future of IT, some companies will still want or need to run applications locally. That fact, combined with the general direction of IT toward simplification, means it’s easy to foresee a tighter integration between Dell, EMC and VMware to simplify application delivery.

    https://virtualizationreview.com/articles/2016/08/01/dell-purchase-of-emc.aspx

  • Dell: EMC Buy Will End Legacy Perceptions Of Dell As A PC Company

    While Dell does a lot more than PCs, the company from CEO Michael Dell on down still embraces its pedigree as a major PC vendor, Khan said. “Michael’s goal is to make Dell an end-to-end enterprise solutions company,” he said.

    http://www.crn.com/news/data-center/300081858/dell-emc-buy-will-end-legacy-perceptions-of-dell-as-a-pc-company.htm

  • EMC still hiring in Massachusetts even as Dell merger looms

    Officials at EMC have been mum about the company’s headcount, especially in the wake of the merger announcement in October 2015. A spokeswoman for EMC declined to comment on the fact that the firm is still hiring in Massachusetts, saying only that “we’ve made it a practice of not disclosing the number of job openings at any given time.”

    The job openings could also signal continued economic development in MetroWest communities, where EMC owns millions of square feet of property, employs thousands of workers and serves as a substantial pillar for the local economy.

    http://www.bizjournals.com/boston/blog/techflash/2016/08/emc-still-hiring-in-massachusetts-even-as-dell.html

Other

  • Apple Acquires Personal Health Data Startup Gliimpse

    Silicon Valley-based Gliimpse has built a personal health data platform that enables any American to collect, personalize, and share a picture of their health data. The company was started in 2013 by Anil Sethi and Karthik Hariharan. Sethi is a serial entrepreneur who has spent the past decade working with health startups, after taking his company Sequoia Software public in 2000. He got his start as a systems engineer at Apple in the late 1980s.

    The acquisition happened earlier this year, but Apple has been characteristically quiet about it. The company has now confirmed the purchase, saying: “Apple buys smaller technology companies from time to time, and we generally do not discuss our purpose or plans.”

    http://www.fastcompany.com/3062865/tim-cooks-apple/apple-acquires-personal-health-data-startup-gliimpse?partner=rss

  • Is Focus on Shareholder Value Killing Manufacturing?

    During the time that shareholder value and stock prices became more important than employees, the U.S. has suffered from:

    1. Growing Manufacturing Unemployment – From 2000 to 2010 manufacturing lost around 6 million jobs. Since the recovery from the Great Recession only 828,000 employees have been hired in manufacturing.
    2. Slowing GDP Growth – Since 2000, GDP growth has averaged a very weak 1.8%
      Increasing Pay Gap – The wealthiest 1% have captured almost all of the growth in income since the 2008 crash.
    3. Increasing Pay Gap – The wealthiest 1% have captured almost all of the growth in income since the 2008 crash.
    4. Increasing Offshoring – Outsourcing of manufacturing jobs to low-cost countries has been the most popular strategy, and EPI asserts that between 2000 and 2007 3.6 million manufacturing jobs were lost. After the Great Recession, between 2007 and 2014, another 1.4 million manufacturing jobs were lost.
    5. Growing Trade Deficit – Our total trade deficit has grown to $10 trillion in the last 30 years.

    http://www.industryweek.com/strategic-planning-execution/focus-shareholder-value-killing-manufacturing?page=2

  • Salesforce is suddenly hiring fewer people after spending nearly $4 billion buying companies this year

    There are 30% fewer open jobs listed on Salesforce’s website over the past three months, with most of the job reductions occurring since early July, according to a note published on Friday by the market research firm Cowen and Company.

    The firm notes that there have also been some “travel restrictions” within the company, citing unnamed sources.

    http://www.businessinsider.com/salesforce-cuts-hiring-after-spending-4-billion-acquisitions-2016-8

  • HP Is Running Out of Ink

    After the spinoff from Hewlett Packard Enterprise (HPE) , 60% of HP’s revenue comes from personal computers and 40% from printing. Of the $1 billion in non-GAAP operating profit last quarter, 77% of the company’s came from printing. Printing had an operating margin of 17.3% and is the biggest contributor to HP’s profits. Printing supplies (ink) makes up 67% of printing revenue.

    Meanwhile, Personal Systems, or the personal computer division, represents 23% of profits and carries a slender 3.5% operating margin. Systems generated a profit of $242 million in the second quarter. The division outperformed the market to achieve an overall market share of 19.4%, up 0.4 points.

    The company has become number one in commercial PCs, with a market share of 24.6%. Total unit shipments fell 9% last quarter, however. Desktop revenue declined 13% and units shipped ddropped 10%.

    http://realmoney.thestreet.com/articles/08/23/2016/hp-running-out-ink

  • Is big data in big trouble?

    If you are a technology buyer, you are probably looking beyond these earnings. You are paying attention to the other developments that occurred in this space this summer: Workday acquired Platfora in July, Qlik Tech got absorbed by private equity firm Thoma Bravo in June. You might also have heard that Amazon is planning to release its business intelligence visualization solution next month, and you know that both Microsoft and Google already have products in this market.

    Betting on one vendor for visualization and business intelligence is becoming increasingly difficult. Rather than worry about the earnings of the industry players, it’s better to focus on their approach and architectural vision instead.

    https://techcrunch.com/2016/08/19/is-big-data-in-big-trouble/

  • Tableau has hired longtime AWS executive Adam Selipsky as its CEO

    Selipsky has spent more than a decade at AWS. Before that, he was an executive at RealNetworks, leading the video subscription and media player division.

    The change is intriguing, particularly given Tableau’s recent financial troubles, said Charles King, principal analyst with Pund-IT.

    “Despite continuing customer growth, the company has been struggling, and its shares have lost a substantial percentage of their value in the past year,” King said.

    http://www.cio.com/article/3110646/tableau-turns-to-aws-for-a-cloud-savvy-ceo.html

  • Cisco wants to be a software company? Why customers should look beyond the hype

    So what does it all mean? For Cisco, it all sounds like business as usual. It’s selling as much software as it ever did but that is simply bundled up in a way that shifts the business model away from selling monolithic hardware. This has been happening to lots of tech firms for at least the last decade as any PC hardware firm will attest. Equally, without the hardware and software integration, some of the need for platform-based firms such as Cisco would go away.

    Cybersecurity is the perfect example of this trend, a sector in which buying security layers bundled up in boxes has given away to the concept of security as a layer in a software-defined network. The sheer complexity of managing hardware using distinct systems ensured the success of this model.

    But what has really changed here is the way software has followed hardware in becoming a commodity. That is what the cloud is: a way of offering complex systems through a consistent set of standards and technologies that let anyone buy the same service for the same price. But the integration between the two remains complex when building network infrastructure, however unsexy that sounds to analysts. Cisco will continue to employ a lot of people who understand how to make the two gel.

    http://www.computerworlduk.com/security/cisco-wants-be-software-company-why-customers-should-look-beyond-hype-3645282/
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  • HP Sued for Alleged Age Bias in Mass Layoffs

    HP slashed roughly 30,000 jobs in 2012 under CEO Meg Whitman, and has conducted smaller cuts since then. According to the complaint, workers over 40 were “significantly more likely” to have their jobs eliminated under the company’s reduction plan.

    A spokesperson for Hewlett-Packard Enterprise denied that age was a consideration in the company’s layoffs. “The decision to implement a workforce reduction is always difficult,” the spokesperson said Monday in an emailed statement, “but we are confident that our decisions were based on legitimate factors unrelated to age.”

    http://www.therecorder.com/id=1202765729294/HP-Sued-for-Alleged-Age-Bias-in-Mass-Layoffs?slreturn=20160723095648

Photo: Maximilian Weisbecker

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Supplier Report: 8/13/2016

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IBM has managed to agitate an entire continent this week by being at the center of IT problems occurring with Australia’s online census.  The Prime Minister has gone on record saying “heads will roll”…

Acquisitions are still going strong: HPE bought SGI, Randstad bought Monster.com, Apple purchased Turi, and IBM might buy Imperva.

Oracle and Microsoft are both dealing with potential information breaches while EMC is facing an existential crisis… can they compete with AWS?

IBM

  • IBM’s Watson won Jeopardy, but can it win business from banks?

    IBM’s pitch to banks is that Watson can do everything from answering customers’ questions in retail branches to detecting credit card fraud to helping wealth managers make better investment recommendations for their clients.

    Bank technology executives said the minimum cost of using software like Watson, including due diligence and training, could reach a few million dollars. It is not uncommon for a full-scale implementation to cost in the tens of millions of dollars, said the executives, who were not authorized to talk to the media.

    An IBM spokeswoman noted companies can develop their own applications using Watson’s underlying code if they do not want to pay for a full-scale implementation. The company declined to give details of the software’s costs.

    http://www.streetinsider.com/Reuters/IBMs+Watson+won+Jeopardy,+but+can+it+win+business+from+banks%3F/11927178.html

  • Will IBM buy Imperva?

    IBM is the top potential suitor for Imperva (NYSE:IMPV), but big blue may have to outbid both Cisco (NASDAQ:CSCO) and Juniper (NYSE:JNPR). Imperva is working with Qatalyst on a sale after succumbing to pressure from Paul Singer’s Elliott Management.

    http://seekingalpha.com/article/3997245-ibm-bidding-war-brewing
    What is Imperva?

    Imperva is a leading provider of data and application security solutions that protect business-critical information in the cloud and on-premises. Founded in 2002, we have enjoyed a steady history of growth and success, generating $234 million in 2015, with over 4,500 customers and 300 partners in more than 90 countries worldwide.

  • IBM under fire as census blame game starts

    Information has begun to emerge about the confluence of events that led the ABS and IBM to take the site down on census night, which show IBM and ABS staff misinterpreted data and were spooked by fears of a damaging data breach following a fairly standard security threat known as a distributed denial of service (DDoS) attack.

    The website problems were initially blamed on the DDoS attack, which would have made the site inaccessible to users by bombarding it with thousands of logins at once.

    However, it was later confirmed that the ABS and IBM decided to take the site down due to security concerns

    http://www.afr.com/technology/ibm-under-fire-as-census-blame-game-starts-20160811-gqqkdu
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  • What IBM Doesn’t Want You To Know

    My takeaway from this interview is merely more solidarity in my original thought on IBM: Great company, awful management. Are these concepts mutually exclusive? No, but they are correlated.

    For investors who have unanswered questions on IBM’s cloud competitiveness, perhaps this interview was unsatisfying. I also was expecting more information, as I would like to add to my analysis on my comparison of worthy cloud investments. But for now, we must wait until IBM’s next earnings report.

    For now, investors must decide whether to support the shell or the ghost inside. I think that a good enough machine can run decently even with a poor operator. Even if you were to attempt to bring IBM down from the inside, you would have quite a task on your hands.

    http://seekingalpha.com/article/3997717-ibm-want-know

  • IBM finally renews with Vodaphone

    Vodafone has renewed its system intergration deal with IBM. The system integration deal is valued at around USD 900 million. The system integration is likely to be outsourced further with small vendors also taking a small part in the deal.

    http://www.moneycontrol.com/news/business/vodafone-renews-system-integration-dealibm-sources_7238501.html

Microsoft

Storage

  • This former EMC exec says Amazon ate his old business and it will never recover

    That traditional storage market, where companies buy specialized hardware called storage arrays to hold and manage corporate data, is never coming back, says Mark Lewis, a longtime storage exec, who was once EMC’s CTO and chief strategy officer.

    There are two reasons for the death spiral, he says:
    1. Storage technology continually gets faster and cheaper.
    2. Amazon changed the game.

    http://www.businessinsider.com/amazon-ate-emc-says-former-emc-exec-2016-8

  • Dell squashes rumors that EMC’s Ambulos is leaving

    It said in a statement to CRN: “It is categorically false that Gregg Ambulos will leave Dell after the completion of the merger. Gregg will be key player in the future organisation, a proven industry leader with deep and trusted relationships with channel partners, and will be an important executive as we build the channel business for Dell EMC.”

    http://www.channelweb.co.uk/crn-uk/news/2467703/dell-squashes-rumours-that-emcs-ambulos-is-leaving

Oracle

  • Russian hackers appear to have infiltrated up to 330,000 computer cash registers sold by Oracle

    “Oracle Security has detected and addressed malicious code in certain legacy MICROS systems. Oracle’s Corporate network and Oracle’s other cloud and service offerings were not impacted by this code. Payment card data is encrypted both at rest and in transit in the MICROS hosted environment.

    “To prevent a recurrence, Oracle implemented additional security measures for the legacy MICROS systems. Consistent with standard security remediation protocols, Oracle is requiring MICROS customers to change the passwords for all MICROS accounts.

    “Information for customers on how to change your passwords has been published on My Oracle Support (Doc ID 2165744.1). We also recommend that you change the password for any account that was used by a MICROS representative to access your on-premises systems.”

    http://www.businessinsider.com/russian-hackers-attack-oracles-cash-registers-2016-8
    Oracle CSO Mary Ann Davidson on Security: Oracle, still clueless about security

    In 2012, for example, Davidson lambasted the Payment Card Industry Security (PCI) Standards Council for requiring “vendors to disclose (dare we say ‘tell all?’) to PCI any known security vulnerabilities and associated security breaches.” Or, as she put it more succinctly, “tell your customers that you have to rat them out to PCI.”

    She added, just to make it perfectly clear where she’s coming from, that information on security vulnerabilities at Oracle is on a “need to know” basis.

    http://www.computerworld.com/article/2975780/security/oracle-still-clueless-about-security.html

  • Oracle’s Data Breach May Explain Spate of Retail Hacks

    The MICROS system compromise could explain why so many shops, hotels, and retail outlets have been suffered breaches at their point of sale systems in the past months, said Avivah Litan, an analyst in Gartner IT -0.03% . Asked whether she believed that this breach has something to do with a recent spate of stolen payment card data in retail andhotel hacks, Litan told Fortune, “I think it’s very likely.”

    http://fortune.com/2016/08/08/oracle-data-breach-retail-hacks/

  • Oracle says it didn’t ask employee to cook cloud accounts

    The software and cloud computing giant appears to be fleshing out its original stand that the employee had been terminated for poor performance and not as a whistleblower, which would give her a number of protections under securities laws.

    In a filing in June in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California, Svetlana Blackburn, a senior finance manager for North America SaaS/Cloud Revenue, alleged that her superiors had instructed her to “to add millions of dollars in accruals to financial reports, with no concrete or foreseeable billing to support the numbers,” an act that she had warned was improper and suspect accounting.

    http://www.cio.com/article/3105985/oracle-says-it-didn-t-ask-employee-to-cook-cloud-accounts.html

Other

  • Apple acquires Turi, a machine learning company

    Apple declined to comment on the financial terms of the deal, but Geekwiresuggests that it was upwards of $200 million.

    This isn’t the first acquisition Apple has made in the AI/machine-learning space. It acquired Perceptio, a company that specialized in machine learning and image recognition, back in September 2015.

    https://techcrunch.com/2016/08/05/apple-acquires-turi-a-machine-learning-company/?ncid=rss

  • Salesforce CEO Sees News Of Oracle’s NetSuite Deal As Mere Drop In Pond

    “We would not expect the combination of these companies to create any meaningful technology/product synergies,” he said.

    http://www.breathecast.com/articles/salesforce-ceo-sees-news-of-oracle-s-netsuite-deal-as-mere-drop-in-pond-35168/
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  • Will Meg Whitman pick head or heart?

    Whitman is continuing to shrink the house that Hewlett and Packard built and that her predecessors Carly Fiorina and Mark Hurd greatly expanded. That would make it easier to swallow up. In May, the company announced plans to merge its services arm into rival CSC in a deal worth $8.5 billion. (Hewlett-Packard had bought EDS, the heart of the division that’s now being sold off, for $13.9 billion in 2008.)

    Richard Kugele, an analyst with Needham & Co., estimates that a buyer would need to pay nearly $50 billion for the company, a 40 percent premium over its current market value.

    http://www.sfchronicle.com/business/article/Will-Meg-Whitman-pick-head-or-heart-9135032.php

  • Hewlett Packard Enterprise acquires high-performance computer company SGI in $275 million deal

    Hewlett Packard Enterprise (HPE) is to acquire SGI, the company formerly known as Silicon Graphics, for $275 million in cash and debt, equal to around $7.75 per share. HPE says the move will help its push into the big data analytics and high-performance computing (HPC) markets.

    SGI has approximately 1100 employees worldwide and brought in $533 million in revenue in its 2016 fiscal year, according to the statement – a drop from the $767 million it made in 2013. Its HPC and big data analytics products are used in the scientific, technical, business and government communities.

    http://www.techspot.com/news/65950-hewlett-packard-enterprise-acquires-high-performance-company-sgi.html

  • Randstad To Acquire Monster For $429 Million

    My colleague John Zappe, who has covered the company for years, said in 2011 Monster was a “takeover target” and noted that there’d been 20 or so rumors of a sale. Then, he said the company’s market cap was about a billion dollars, after decreasing by billions. Randstad, which has about 30,000 employees in 39 countries, will pay $429 million for Monster now.

    http://www.eremedia.com/sourcecon/randstad-to-acquire-monster-for-429-million/

Photo: Kale Nimz

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Supplier Report: 7/23/2016

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IBM had another down quarter but is reporting 30% growth in cloud and their “critical initiatives”, while they are growing the future of Big Blue, are they turning friends into enemies? What does IBM and Microsoft’s deal for their Surface devices means for Apple in the long run?

Salesforce purchased a datacenter analytics company while there are rumors that Oracle might buy cloud computing company Netsuite.

HPE failed to get an Oracle lawsuit dismissed and also seems to be failing to pay their sales teams.

Can Google use AI to cut datacenter energy costs by 40%? (Yes… with a big BUT)

IBM

  • IBM grows in cloud and data analytics but overall revenue slides

    The Armonk, New York, company said Monday that revenue from its new “strategic imperatives” like cloud, analytics and security increased by 12 percent year-on-year to US$8.3 billion. That increase was, however, lower than the growth the company had reported in these businesses in the first quarter.

    Cloud revenue – public, private and hybrid – grew 30 percent in the second quarter, while revenue from analytics grew 4 percent, revenue from mobile increased 43 percent and the security business grew 18 percent.

    Additionally:

    IBM’s systems revenue, for example, was down 23 percent in the quarter to $2 billion, while its Global Business Services, including consulting, global process services and application management, brought in revenue of $4.3 billion, down 3.0 percent from a year earlier. Revenue for the company’s z Systems mainframes was down 40 percent in the quarter while margins improved, “consistent with where we are in the product cycle.” Schroeter said. IBM acquired EZSource in the quarter to help developers quickly and easily update mainframe applications.

    http://www.pcworld.com/article/3097273/ibm-grows-in-cloud-and-data-analytics-but-overall-revenue-slides.html

  • IBM: A Hodgepodge Going Nowhere

    I’m going to pick on Truven here because I’m a bit familiar with the company from the past. Truven basically owns a bunch of data on patients and licenses it out to companies so they can try and analyze it. IBM’s plan is to essentially plug all that data into Watson and hope it can come up with some clever insights to better treat patients. But is it really worth $2.6 billion? While IBM could certainly be onto something with all its healthcare-related acquisitions, since the industry is ripe for reform, chances are probably just as high that the company is acquiring as much as it can in the hopes that something turns into a homerun.

    My friends at Seeking Alpha really don’t like IBM (even when there is positive news). 
    http://seekingalpha.com/article/3989255-ibm-hodgepodge-going-nowhere
    Also from SA: IBM May Not Be A Hopeless Disaster After All

    In the past, I’ve stated repeatedly that IBM was too far away from growing its imperatives revenue quickly enough to make up for the losses in its legacy businesses but it seems that is no longer the case. What started as a small proportion of revenue is now a significant piece of the business and at the rate it is growing, IBM could potentially see top line growth in the relatively near future if it can stop the hemorrhaging elsewhere. Can it do that? Maybe; we’ll just have to wait and see. But at least the conversation can happen now whereas that was certainly not the case in the relatively recent past.

    http://seekingalpha.com/article/3989381-ibm-may-hopeless-disaster

  • CSC and IBM Expand Strategic Alliance with Collaboration Utilizing IBM Cloud for z to Enable Clients’ Move to Cloud

    CSC and IBM today announced a collaboration in which IBM will provide its Cloud Managed Services for z Systems — IBM Cloud for z — and associated mainframe hardware, software, monitoring and governance support to CSC clients who are moving to the cloud and want a more secure, scalable, flexible information technology infrastructure at significantly reduced operational costs.

    The expanded alliance further advances CSC’s vision of the “Service-Enabled Enterprise” and IBM’s “as-a-service” strategy, both designed to increase client choice and innovation in adopting emerging technologies. The as-a-service strategy provides consumption-based pricing for the IBM z Systems environment to give clients’ greater capital investment flexibility.

    So… IBM cuts their consulting force, CSC merges with HPE’s, and now there is this “collaboration”.  Interesting.
    http://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/csc-and-ibm-expand-strategic-alliance-with-collaboration-utilizing-ibm-cloud-for-z-to-enable-clients-move-to-cloud-300300377.html

  • IBM Watson Wants to Be Your New Salesperson at Macy’s

    Customers can type in questions, and Macy’s On Call will return the top answer for that question along with location-specific details. For example, a customer could type, “Where are the ladies shoes?” or ask to find a specific brand of a dress, and the assistant will inform the shopper as to where the shoes are located in the store and where the exact dress is located.

    http://fortune.com/2016/07/20/ibm-watson-macys/

Hewlett Packard Enterprise | HP Inc

Oracle

  • Oracle could be about to buy NetSuite

    Oracle Corporation (NYSE:ORCL) is on the brink of announcing its buyout of cloud computing rival NetSuite Inc (NYSE:N), according to unconfirmed market rumors on Thursday.

    Gossips reckoned NetSuite has delayed publication of financial results due this week until next week because the pair want to unveil the deal beforehand.

    http://www.proactiveinvestors.com/companies/news/128488/oracle-could-be-about-to-buy-netsuite-128488.html

  • Oracle Wins Round in Copyright Suit With HPE

    U.S. District Judge Jon Tigar on Friday largely denied HPE’s motion to dismiss the suit, which accuses the company of participating in a scheme to use pilfered intellectual property to win customer-service contracts away. Friday’s decision was filed under seal, but at a Thursday afternoon hearing Tigar outlined his tentative ruling. He indicated he would partially dismiss Oracle’s claim under California’s unfair competition law but allow the core copyright claims to proceed.

    Oracle sued HPE in March, accusing its rival of pairing with Terix Computer Co. Inc. to sell hardware and software support services for Oracle’s Sun-branded computers running the Solaris operating system. Oracle’s lawyers, led by Christopher Yates of Latham & Watkins, have alleged that HPE officials knew Terix illegally used Oracle customer credentials to access copyrighted Solaris updates for servers. Oracle claims that only servers covered by valid Oracle support contracts had a license to the updates.

    http://www.therecorder.com/litigation-news/id=1202762942712/Oracle-Wins-Round-in-Copyright-Suit-With-HPE

  • Exclusive: Oracle to reboot Java EE for the cloud

    Rumored to have put the project on the back burner, Oracle has weathered a storm of complaints over its stewardship of enterprise Java, with two separate organizations considering plans to move Java EE forward without Oracle. Rather than let Java EE wither, Oracle is instead looking to reboot the platform to better accommodate where enterprises are headed, particularly to the cloud, said a high-ranking Oracle official in response to recent criticism.

    http://www.infoworld.com/article/3098007/java/oracle-to-reboot-java-ee-for-the-cloud.html

Storage (EMC | Dell )

  • EMC Exec: No Competition Between Dell-Nutanix Appliance And EMC Hyper-Convergence Portfolio

    “If I buy into the [EMC] ‘blocks, racks and rails’ story, it’s not really competitive against Nutanix,” Miller said. The Nutanix-based Dell XC appliance, “is for a smaller play, or someone who hasn’t completely bought into [the hyper-convergence] methodology,” he said.

    http://www.crn.com/news/data-center/300081365/emc-exec-no-competition-between-dell-nutanix-appliance-and-emc-hyper-convergence-portfolio.htm

  • EMC, Dell merger approved by shareholders in 98% vote

    From Joe Tucci, EMC Chairman and CEO: “Today’s resoundingly favorable shareholder vote clearly supports our view that combining Dell and EMC will create a powerhouse in the technology industry. The Board and I care very deeply about, and have worked diligently to represent, what we believe is the best outcome for all stakeholders. I want to thank our shareholders for their support, as well as our customers and partners.  My special thanks to the talented people of EMC for their hard work, dedication and passion.”

    http://seekingalpha.com/news/3194069-emc-dell-merger-approved-shareholders-98-percent-vote

Microsoft

  • What will it take to turn Microsoft back to growth?

    Wall Street analysts on average expect the tech giant to post fiscal fourth-quarter revenue of $22.14 billion on earnings per share of 58 cents, according to a Thomson Reuters survey of 23 analyst estimates. This would mark the smallest year-over-year drop in quarterly revenue since the fourth quarter of last year.

    Overall, revenue is expected to decline 2 percent for fiscal 2016, but the company is headed in the right direction: Revenue growth is expected to return next quarter. Analysts project Microsoft to report 2 percent growth in the September quarter and 4 percent growth for fiscal 2017.

    http://www.cnbc.com/2016/07/18/what-it-will-take-for-microsoft-to-return-to-growth.html

Other

  • Salesforce Takes Measures Against Google Android Fragmentation-Related Issues

    Salesforce announced on its official support page that it will only support Google Nexus and Samsung Galaxy devices. The firm released a statement saying that the decision to support a limited number of devices regardless of the many Android devices on the market was so that it can improve its services on the devices supported. This will allow Android users on supported devices to have a better user experience.

    http://marketexclusive.com/salesforce-com-inc-nysecrm-takes-measures-alphabet-inc-nasdaqgoogl-google-android-fragmentation-related-issues/9249/

  • Google unleashes DeepMind on energy-hungry datacenter, cutting cooling bill by 40 percent

    We accomplished this by taking the historical data that had already been collected by thousands of sensors within the data centre — data such as temperatures, power, pump speeds, setpoints, etc. — and using it to train an ensemble of deep neural networks. Since our objective was to improve data centre energy efficiency, we trained the neural networks on the average future PUE (Power Usage Effectiveness), which is defined as the ratio of the total building energy usage to the IT energy usage. We then trained two additional ensembles of deep neural networks to predict the future temperature and pressure of the data centre over the next hour. The purpose of these predictions is to simulate the recommended actions from the PUE model, to ensure that we do not go beyond any operating constraints.

    https://deepmind.com/blog?t=1
    sn_unlimitedpower

  • Microsoft, IBM and SAP’s Impressive Cloud Numbers Don’t Tell the Whole Story

    Moreover, a shift from on-premise to cloud revenue streams is pressuring the margins of many firms, as hosting cloud apps and services brings with it expenses that don’t exist with regular software sales. While Microsoft’s revenue rose 2% in the June quarter, the company’s cost of revenue rose 7%, with cloud and search ad expense growth more than offsetting the impact of plunging phone sales. Meanwhile, IBM’s gross margin fell 190 basis points in the second quarter to 49%.

    https://www.thestreet.com/story/13646457/2/microsoft-ibm-and-sap-report-impressive-cloud-numbers-but-they-don-t-tell-the-whole-story.html

  • Should Apple worry about Microsoft-IBM deal?

    Apple’s role in the enterprise has been and, for the foreseeable future, will be anchored to workers and consumers, not big businesses, says Aaron Gette, CIO of Bay Club, a lifestyle and fitness company. “Microsoft might not be first to market, but they come prepared and well versed,” he says. “Microsoft’s Azure is beginning to win in the enterprise cloud marketplace, so the role of IBM’s ability to deliver apps to the Surface users in the enterprise is a great play.”

    http://www.cio.com/article/3098267/it-industry/should-apple-worry-about-microsoft-ibm-deal.html

  • Salesforce acquires crowd-sourced data analytics solution Coolan

    Coolan is a data analytics platform that monitors the performance of data centers, that helps predict server failure, reduce downtime, and lower the cost of infrastructure. Their cloud analytics platform is aimed at predicting the flaws in a data center and helping the hardware community build a reliable and efficient infrastructure.

    http://thetechportal.com/2016/07/22/salesforce-acquires-coolan/
    Why Salesforce Is Buying This Little-Known Startup

    “If you’re a company buying, say 100 Dell servers this year, and another 100 in six months and another 100 next year, you really don’t know what the components in all those servers are,” said a source close to Coolan, who requested anonymity because he is not authorized to speak on the deal. “Some may have Western Digital hard drives, others may have Seagate, some server lots will have memory from this supplier, others from someone else. Coolan goes in and tells you what all those components are, how they all perform over time and what their failure rates are.”

    http://fortune.com/2016/07/22/salesforce-coolan-data-centers/

Photo: Nicolas Cool

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