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IT industry trends: Six major vendors chart new courses

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Dell and EMC merger poses a challenging transformation

The Dell and EMC merger presents a multitude of opportunities for market domination -- if the integrated companies can modernize a highly complex portfolio.

In 2015, Dell Inc. shook up the tech world when it revealed plans to acquire rival EMC Corp. Speculation abounded of how these two giants would combine and  thrive in the rapidly changing IT landscape.

A corporate vision soon came into focus: become a one-stop shop for businesses' every IT need. The $67 billion merger brought with it a diverse mix of EMC-owned subsidiaries, including virtualization pioneer VMware, cloud-native application development company Pivotal, security companies RSA and SecureWorks, and infrastructure-as-a-service provider Virtustream. By aligning these many assets, Dell Technologies aimed to offer the most comprehensive technology portfolio available on the market, spanning PC, server, storage and virtualization products.

But transitioning into the leader of multiple technology categories meant integrating operations and complex portfolios that didn't come without some overlap. For example, analysts pointed to an overlap in the vendors' midrange storage products.

Unlike competitor Hewlett Packard Enterprise, which has looked to slim down its operations since splitting from Hewlett Packard's traditional PC and printers business, the massive Dell and EMC merger demonstrated an ethos of "big is better." While Dell EMC's approach has put numerous assets underneath one roof and enabled broad reach into the enterprise market, time will tell if the scope and size of the combined companies will hinder innovation and market growth.

Take a look at the collection of articles below for a deeper dive into the transformation happening at Dell EMC.

Pivoting to emerging technologies

As sales decline in traditional storage markets, Dell EMC is moving ahead with a focus on emerging technologies, such as flash, hyper-convergence and cloud. In this SearchStorage article, Dave Raffo examines the vendor's transition from a traditional data vendor to a modern one and the struggles Dell Technologies will likely encounter.

Dell EMC debuts first round of post-merger products

Dell EMC debuted the first fruits of integration at this year's Dell EMC World conference, generating mix responses from customers. Instead of unveiling head-turning products, Dell EMC introduced a new generation of servers, hyper-converged infrastructure and storage that displayed only minor upgrades. SearchDataCenter's Robert Gates provides insight into the product releases.

A full-stack strategy for IoT

The Dell and EMC merger brought together assets that are well-suited for emerging IoT opportunities. This piece from InternetofThingsAgenda explores how Dell Technologies will use its acquired assets, as well as its partnerships, to develop a comprehensive, full-stack approach to IoT infrastructure.

Dell EMC expands hyper-convergence options

At its annual conference, Dell EMC said it would keep its competing hyper-converged appliances, VxRail and XC, in play. The reasoning behind the decision was simple, according Dell EMC executives: to have an offering for customers regardless of their choice of hypervisor, whether it is VMware's hypervisor or a competitor's.

Unifying a channel strategy

The Dell and EMC merger posed the challenging task of creating a partner program that would bring together legacy Dell PartnerDirect and EMC channel communities. In this partner program update, Dell EMC's global channel chief, John Byrne, describes the journey to developing the Dell EMC program and the impact it's having on partner businesses.

Next Steps

Dell EMC introduces its first enterprise backup product

Get insight into Dell EMC's cloud storage strategy

The ultimate guide to the Dell-EMC merger

This was last published in September 2017

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360 Guide: IT industry trends: Six major vendors chart new courses

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