Dell Technologies is looking to tap channel partners in the desktop virtualization space to sell two new mobile thin clients.
The Dell Latitude E7270 and the Latitude 3460, released this week, are the latest additions to Dell's virtual desktop infrastructure (VDI) portfolio, which the company has steadily expanded throughout the year. Designed using Dell's Latitude laptop platforms and Wyse thin clients, the Dell thin clients target two classes of mobile workers within customer organizations: the highly mobile worker, such an employee who is frequently on the road, and 'the corridor warrior,' an employee that's mobile within an office environment, said Dan O'Farrell, senior director of product marketing for cloud client computing at Dell.
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The higher-performing of the two Dell thin clients, the Latitude E7270, is equipped with a 12.5-inch display and an Intel 6th Generation Core i5 processor, which provides the "local horsepower to ensure a great user experience," O'Farrell said. He added the E7220 best suits users "who need a fairly powerful end device for accessing their virtual desktops."
The Latitude 3460, by contrast, has a larger, 14-inch screen and an Intel Celeron 3215U processor. He noted it suits an office worker who runs "the everyday mix of Office applications," such as Outlook, Excel, PowerPoint and Word.
"We view the channel as key in the go-to-market model for [the new Dell thin clients]," O'Farrell said. "I think the way our partners will look at [the Latitude E7270 and 3460 release] is that it's even more choice and more capability for customers."
He added the products are ideal for the five "usual suspect" verticals for thin client sales -- healthcare, retail, education, finance and government. Other relevant verticals include exploration and energy, manufacturing and media editing.
While the mobile thin clients are "part and parcel to [Dell's] overall goal to make desktop virtualization easy to plan, easy to purchase, easy to implement and easy to operate," O'Farrell noted that VDI is "still a somewhat complex animal." The complexity presents an opportunity for partners to offer design, planning, education and training services to customers, as well as value-added services to oversee VDI environments.
"We've done great things to vastly simplify [VDI], but the other advantage to partners is that you can make a VDI opportunity much more transactional in nature," he said.
BTG offers hyper-convergence, private clouds to partners
Breakthrough Technology Group (BTG), a managed infrastructure, IT and telecom solutions provider, said it has transitioned its private cloud offering to a hyper-converged architecture and plans to ramp up its channel program in 2017.
The company's Adaptable Cloud Services are hosted in SSAE 16-certified data centers. In addition, BTG provides offerings layered on top of its hyper-converged infrastructure. According to the company, those include AppsAnyplace, a managed hosted virtual desktop and application delivery offering; SaaSAnyplace, a suite of Microsoft productivity tools provided as a service; and DataAnyplace, a secure collaboration, data management and sharing offering built on Citrix ShareFile.
BTG pursues channel ties with consultants, value-added resellers, managed service providers (MSPs) and other channel companies through its Private Cloud Partner Program. Jeff Kaplan, CEO of BTG, based in Morganville, N.J., said channel partners accustomed to supplying on-premises servers and storage could be left out as customers shift to the cloud. He said partners could find themselves "with a big, gaping revenue hole that they need to fill, or [they'll] be in trouble."
He said more partners will need to transition to a recurring revenue model, but noted that cloud infrastructure is expensive to build.
"Most [channel companies] are going to want to partner with someone," Kaplan said.
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