It’s a new year! Welcome to 2017. What will it bring? Here are a few thoughts on trends that will impact Software Asset Management (SAM) teams this year.
The Cloud (of course)
The cloud computing trend continues, with some new developments such as the concept of the “multi-cloud” approach, wherein enterprises can reduce costs by using multiple cloud vendors. According to this article on CIO.com, 451 Research says that “enterprises can cut direct cloud expenditure by up to 74 percent with a multi-cloud approach.”
In the same CIO.com article, hybrid cloud is also discussed and they mention the 2016 partnership between Amazon Web Services (AWS) and VMware. This partnership gives AWS access to hybrid cloud capabilities and helps them compete in this arena with Microsoft Azure. Microsoft will be coming out with its Azure Stack offering this year, too. This is “a new hybrid cloud platform product that enables you to deliver Azure services from your own datacenter.” And, Oracle has come out with their Oracle Cloud Machine. A Constellation Research blog says “Oracle in March rolled out Cloud Machine, a hardware appliance implemented behind customers’ firewalls, running application workloads using the same software stack that powers Oracle’s public cloud, with subscription-based pricing.”
As part of Microsoft’s licensing changes announced in 2016 (also discussed in the Constellation Research blog mentioned above), they raised the minimum threshold for Enterprise Agreements to 500 users/devices, up from 250. Companies that don’t meet that minimum are being directed to two newer, more flexible licensing programs: Microsoft Products and Services Agreement (MPSA) and Cloud Solutions Provider. Per the Constellation blog, Cloud Solutions Provider is “a partner-driven program aimed at helping Microsoft’s massive reseller community sell its cloud services to SMEs while providing a local “face” for IT support.”