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In Cloud Field Day 9 Netapp has presented some of its cloud solutions. This happens later NetApp InsightThe company’s annual event not only provides its user base with new products, but also an overview of the company’s future strategy. NetApp presented a lot of interesting news and projects revolving around multi-cloud data and systems management.
Conversion to data structure
This is not the first time that NetApp has changed its strategy completely. Remember when NetApp was a boring ONTAP-only company? Of course, there’s nothing wrong with ONTAP (the storage OS originally designed by NetApp is still the core of many of its storage devices). It can’t be the solution for everything, even if it works quite well.
When ONTAP was the only answer to every question (even with the systems StorageGrid and EF were part of the portfolio), the company started to look boring and to be honest, not very reliable. .
The day the Data Fabric vision was announced, I remain skeptical, but this is a huge change for this company, and if they could do it, I would be really impressed. The company started developing products like StorageGrid, acquiring companies like Solidifre, integrating different product lines to make things work together, and adding additional tools to simplify life. of cutomer. In the end, ONTAP is no longer the answer to every question, and the company has gotten cool again.
Cloud, built on top of data
Don’t get me wrong, the vision around Data Fabric already includes the cloud, but it’s incomplete in some respects. Data Fabric, for example, was developed before the success of Kubernetes and multi-cloud is still a very distant future. But still, it needs an update type.
Now, after Insight and CFD, I think this strategy update is complete and NetApp is one of the most hybrid savvy providers in the market scene. Project Astra or even new VDS (Virtual Desktop Service) use the foundation of Data Fabric, then build on it.
This is not a hosting provider anymore, at least not a traditional one. it is diversifying and becoming a more reliable player on the cloud table. Interestingly, it is doing so in a way that doesn’t compete with cloud providers or their traditional counterparts. In fact, they are presenting themselves as a platform layer that enables the continuous migration of data from on-premises to the cloud and then consistently managing it, with similar user experiences, across Different cloud backgrounds. CSPs really like the first part of this, while the latter helps their partners find the same environment in which to run their solutions. From a user perspective, NetApp gives them additional options, increasing their freedom of choice. Can say a win-win-win script.
From the outside, NetApp is building an interesting set of solutions on top of a consistent and reliable data management layer. From certain perspectives, this strategy is similar to what you might get from VMware, with their stacks now available across all clouds and additional solutions built on top of it ( DRaaS, for example, comes from the Datrium acquisition).
Close the circle
I don’t know if NetApp is still classified as a traditional hosting provider. Yes, the revenue coming from the sale of storage boxes is still a large part of their income (so in a view, they are still “traditional”), but the change of strategy is quite obvious here and Cloud revenue is becoming more relevant, quarter after quarter.
Most businesses are changing the way they think about IT infrastructure, hybrid and multi-cloud strategies are now the norm with a strong impact on how budgets are allocated. Users want to be free and run their applications when required by the business and traditional hosting providers are not part of the conversation. It is important to note that from this point of view NetApp is not alone, I mentioned VMware earlier in this post but others like RedHat also have the same strategy in my opinion. They all want to build the same user experience no matter where you deploy your application (and data).
Can NetApp be changed again? Will it be a reliable cloud provider? Will they become a true hybrid cloud storage provider? I think they’ve done a great job with Data Fabric and they’re on the right track to repeat themselves. Of course only time will tell, but comparing them to some of the other traditional hosting providers, you can say that they are actually well positioned to do a great job.