Channel Marker

December 22, 2010  3:05 PM

Latest offshore services ranking: Here’s what you are up against

Heather Clancy Heather Clancy Profile: Heather Clancy

Gartner has published a new report ranking the top 30 countries that are leaders when it comes to offshore capacity for IT services. You’ll find many of the usual suspects on the list and India is still No. 1, but the research firm has also identified new locations that are emerging as top players for offshore activities — because the cost structure in India is rising.

Here are some of the list highlights (I’m not including every country):

  • Bangladesh, which is rated “very good” for cost structure
  • China, which improved its scores for both political climate and cultural compatibility
  • Indonesia, which carries an “excellent’ rating when it comes to costs but doesn’t do as well for its labor pool, which is rated “fair”
  • Malaysia, which has especially good government support for green IT initiatives
  • Sri Lanka, which comes back to the list after being off for three years
  • Vietnam, which is especially attractive for the size of its young workforce

It is my belief that more U.S.-based IT services companies will be spreading their wings internationally in 2011, as businesses begin investing in IT infrastructure again and look for partners that can address their multinational needs. Seems like it would be good to know where you might experience the most competition — or where you might find the best local partners for your business.

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December 17, 2010  7:24 PM

Mobilize your mobile development

Heather Clancy Heather Clancy Profile: Heather Clancy

I’ve been reporting two stories about technology trends for the past several weeks (a look-back and a look-forward) and one of the most recurrent themes that IT solution providers are bringing up proactively (as in, I haven’t asked a leading question) is mobility.

As in, you need to support it — with managed services and application development. I’ll be reporting on that more in those forthcoming stories for, but meanwhile, market research firm IDC has just published a forecast for the worldwide mobile applications market.

According to its data, IDC believes the number of downloaded mobile applications will grow from 10.9 billion in 2010 to roughly 76.9 billion in 2014. The focus of those applications is myriad — ranging from smart phones to media tablets to (eventually) connected devices for the home, IDC predicts. The revenue for those applications will be a whopping $35 billion-plus by the end of the forecast timeframe.

In my opinion, this means two big things for the solution provider community:

  1. You need to look carefully at your managed services contracts to make sure they state what is and is not covered. Increasingly, you’ll need to support smartphones and tablets, even those that aren’t explicitly sanctioned by your clients’ own internal IT departments. Are your contracts priced to handle those devices?
  2. Make sure you are not missing the boast with respect to development services. Do you have people on your team who understand which mobile software platforms matter? Are you selling solutions that need a mobile element added? Have you even thought about this?

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December 14, 2010  7:33 PM

Introducing The VCE Company

badarrow Barbara Darrow Profile: badarrow

So, today the VCE coalition became the VCE Company. Or at least that’s the second-hand reports coming out of a series of conference calls hosted Tuesday by VCE, the consortium formed last year by Cisco Systems, EMC Corp. and VMware.

Continued »

December 9, 2010  4:57 PM

Dell, Compellent talk deal

badarrow Barbara Darrow Profile: badarrow


Update:  On Monday morning, Dell finalized its deal to buy Compellent for $960 million or $27.75 per share in cash. As of the end of its third quarter, closing Oct. 31, Dell had just under $13.5 billion in cash on hand.)


Another shoe dropping. Dell and Compellent acknowledged Friday that they’re in M&A talks.

The companies said they’re exclusively talking about a merger valuing Compellent at $27.25 per share in cash. Continued »

December 9, 2010  4:27 PM

Channel issues block Vblock sales

badarrow Barbara Darrow Profile: badarrow


Data center VARs really want the VCE Coalition to get its sales act together soon and some hope for news along those lines Dec. 14 when coalition execs will talk about what’s going on with the VCE Partner Program, go-to-market plans and training.   Continued »

December 8, 2010  4:16 PM

Survey: Expansion plans could be thwarted by talent, IT gaps

Heather Clancy Heather Clancy Profile: Heather Clancy

There is a new survey published by IT services and research giant Accenture suggesting that even though many high-tech companies and electronics companies are now thinking globally — including, increasingly, some of you folks out there in the channel — AND have the money to execute on those plans, they might not have the right people to help make good on that strategy. Or, for that matter, the right technology. Continued »

December 2, 2010  8:23 PM

Logicalis expands K-12 education, Southwest presence

Heather Clancy Heather Clancy Profile: Heather Clancy

Network Infrastructure Corp. (NIC), a Cisco Gold partner and networking integrator in Phoenix, will soon become part of global IT services company Logicalis. Terms of the deal weren’t disclosed. Continued »

November 24, 2010  2:56 PM

Court: SAP owes Oracle $1.3B

badarrow Barbara Darrow Profile: badarrow

The verdict is in and SAP owes Oracle $1.3 billion for copyright infringement.

Oracle had sought up to $3 billion while SAP, which admitted wrongdoing, said the true damages amount should lie between $28 million and $41 million. Continued »

November 23, 2010  7:27 PM

Distie Avnet supports development of ‘mobile-ready’ data centers

Heather Clancy Heather Clancy Profile: Heather Clancy

I stashed this news release from a few weeks back because I wanted to muse on it for a while. But here’s the basic development: value-added distributor Avnet Technology Solutions has established a practice called MobilityPath to help technology solution providers support emerging solutions in mobility, such as tablets and smartphones, as well as unified communications. Continued »

November 18, 2010  3:55 AM

Apple shops cry foul as Steve Jobs Xs out XServer

badarrow Barbara Darrow Profile: badarrow

Ironic. Even as Apple brings on integrator heavyweights to push its technology into more business accounts, Apple is discontinuing its XServe server. Sales will end January 31, 2011. Support will continue. For awhile.

While XServe was no market share leader, it has a devoted cadre of users in ad agencies, video production shops and education accounts.

The Xserve discontinuation, disclosed on an Apple support forum, provoked some lively discussion.  Apple CEO Steve Jobs reportedly told a complaining XServe user by email, that “hardly anyone” bought XServes.

Many Apple watchers think that Apple has given up on attacking business accounts from the server room, instead hoping to ride “edge” devices like its popular iPhones and iPads into corporate boardrooms.

Let us know what you think about the story; email Barbara Darrow, Senior News Director at, or follow us on twitter.

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