New Microsoft partnership and cloud solutions: 4 biggest announcements from Nutanix global conference

Nutanix, a leader in enterprise cloud computing, has revealed a number of major announcements at its .NEXT Conference, including new strides in its partnerships and multicloud and hybrid cloud service offerings.

1. Nutanix partners with Microsoft Azure

Nutanix released the news they will be working with Microsoft Azure on a partnership that will allow a seamless delivery of hybrid and multicloud solutions, bringing about increased agility and unified management across on-premises and Azure environments using Nutanix Clusters.

“We know customers are looking for solutions to truly, and simply, advance their cloud journey. This partnership helps us deliver a single software stack across public and private clouds,” said Tarkan Maner, the Chief Commercial Officer at Nutanix.

As part of this collaboration, users on Nutanix Cluster will be provided with a security upgrade along with the option to deploy and manage Microsoft’s cloud computing platform from Nutanix Cluster’s management interface. 

“Many companies face complexities when managing hybrid cloud environments across private and public clouds,” said Scott Guthrie, the Executive Vice President for Cloud and AI at Microsoft Corporation.

With the aim of streamlining these processes, customers will be empowered with the ability to manage servers, containers, and data services on Nutanix’s hyperconverged infrastructure software (HCI), on-premise or in Azure through the Azure Arc control plane using Kubernetes.

“I envision this hybrid cloud solution will accelerate our teams’ ability to try new innovative ideas and bring them to our customers, by increasing agility, scalability and reliability while reducing risk,” said Ken Shaffer, AVP Technology at CarMax.

An improved sales and support experience is also part of the deal. Nutanix customers will be able to port their existing term licenses to Nutanix Clusters on Azure or get on-demand consumption of Nutanix software through the Microsoft Azure Marketplace; while Microsoft Azure customers will be able to use their existing Azure credits to purchase Nutanix software.

The flexibility of solutions makes unified hybrid cloud an appealing option for organisations where technology is critical for their daily operations.

“At United Network for Organ Sharing, technology is vital in support of our mission. Technology makes it possible to match life-saving donor organs to transplant candidates,” said Tiwan Nicholson, the Director of IT Service Operations at the United Network for Organ Sharing.

A unified hybrid cloud solution was ideal for the United Network for Organ Sharing by bridging private and public clouds to create a reliable, scalable and flexible IT infrastructure.

2. Nutanix launches a new Kubernetes multicloud PaaS

And on the topic of Kubernetes, Nutanix announced a new multicloud Platform-as-a-Service (PaaS) based on open-source system.

The service, known as Karbon Platform Services, is designed to accelerate the deployment and development of microservices-based applications like Grab, Netflix and Amazon across any cloud platform.

“IT resources are the engines that power digital enterprises. But as a company scales, adopts hybrid cloud, and manages an increasing number of applications, supporting engineering needs can be challenging for IT,” said Rajiv Mirani, the CTO at Nutanix.

The offering provides a turnkey managed services experience along with automated security and multi-tenancy​ for software developers looking to build cloud native apps whilst decoupling them from underlying infrastructures.

“We were looking for a single PaaS platform that could host our Reflex and Vision Insights on both the edge and in our private cloud, to take advantage of both a distributed architecture as well as support software development and machine training on the public cloud,” said Damien Pasquinelli, the CTO at Hardis Group.

With IT resources being the engine that powers digital enterprises, the infrastructures need to keep up with businesses scaling up and adopting new technologies without compromising their ability to manage data, applications, and IT resources simply and effectively. 

In a statement by Nutanix, the company identified Kubernetes as a rapidly evolving ecosystem of cloud native technologies that brings with it difficulties to implement without extensive technical resources.

“The complexities of Kubernetes and multicloud infrastructure management can not only overwhelm IT operations teams, but also limit the resources and tooling available to modern application software developers,”  said Bob Laliberte, the Practice Director and Senior Analyst at ESG Research.

A recent survey by ESG revealed that 70% of customers prefer a combination of public cloud and private data centers for containerised applications, making flexible multicloud solutions ideal.

Nutanix’s Karbon Platform Services represents a significant milestone for the company, as it looks to expand offerings aimed at accelerating enterprises’ cloud native journeys and simplifying application lifecycles.

3. New major HCI software capabilities

During their NEXT Conference, Nutanix also announced enhanced capabilities in its existing HCI software by extending its stack to the public cloud.

“HCI has become the standard for powering modern private clouds … Today’s announcement highlights Nutanix’s commitment to innovation to meet emerging customer requirements and further disrupt the industry status quo,” said Nutanix in a statement.

By utilising the latest storage technology, including NVMe based SSDs and Intel Optane SSDs, customers are purported to be able to reduce latency and power up workload performance by 50%.

“The advanced performance capabilities … will deliver our joint customers with the HCI solutions they need to support their most intensive applications, allowing them to more readily innovate and develop new business models,” said Chris Tobias, the General Manager for Optane Solutions Division at Intel.

On top of this, the new HCI improvements will support the increasingly common Zero-Trust security strategies through Nutanix’s Flow Security Central.

Rather than automatically trusting users, these strategies require granular network policy controls and the ability to monitor and update those controls in real-time to verify all that attempt to connect to a system.

However, many organisations struggle with application visibility and unified security management, according to Nutanix. To solve this, Security Central aims to provide a security hub for greater network visibility that can help IT teams assess the overall security of their deployments.

On top of that, Nutanix has made significant investments in research and development of their core software, with Flow Networking to simplify the creation of software-defined networks that connect apps running in private data centers and in the public cloud as well as Prism Ultimate, a solution used to troubleshoot application-related infrastructure bottlenecks and resource consumption visibility.

4. A New Global Partner Multicloud Program

To bring together all of Nutanix’s partner ecosystems for the very first time and further enable innovation using the above solutions, Nutanix launched its new global partner program known as Elevate.

Through a significant double-digit increase in investment by Nutanix, their partners, from service providers, telcos, hypersales and vendors, will come under one integrated architecture using a consistent set of tools, resources and marketing platforms.

“Our vision has always been about simplicity, from the technology we innovate to the way we do business, and Elevate will deliver that vision to the entire partner ecosystem – enabling them to leverage market shifts toward subscription-based, multi-product, multicloud delivery of IT for their customers,” said Christian Alvarez, Nutanix’s Senior Vice President of Worldwide Channels.

Nutanix partners include Berca in Indonesia, CTC Global in Malaysia, Questronix Corp in the Philippines, StarHub in Singapore, Fujitsu in Thailand, and Terralogic in Vietnam.

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NTT launches new private cloud for enterprises in Singapore and Hong Kong

NTT announced the launch of a new Private Cloud for Enterprise service in Hong Kong and Singapore today to help clients meet growing demands in their digital transformation journeys.

The new service is a core component of the global technology services provider’s Intelligent Data Center and hybrid cloud capabilities.

“Enterprises today are using various applications with a large amount of data stored in various platforms and they want to manage their hybrid IT securely,” said Masaaki Moribayashi, the Senior Executive Vice President of Services for NTT Ltd.

Hybrid IT and cloud adoption is becoming more and more essential in enabling business growth and digital transformation by bringing benefits like greater scalability, cost efficiency and security. This has resulted in the Hybrid Cloud market rising from a value of US$45.70 billion in 2019 to an estimated US$128 billion by 2025.

“Our Private Cloud service will specifically target high growth sectors supporting clients to manage their critical applications, including SAP, to enhance the agility and flexibility in securely managing large volumes of data in the cloud,” added Mr. Moribayashi.

The private cloud market adoption is also growing as part of its role in the hybrid cloud environment, as enterprises recognise how private cloud can support key security, governance, performance and regulatory compliance requirements.

“Financial clients can quickly develop new businesses by incorporating the latest technologies while complying with security regulation in each country. Manufacturers can fuel growth of their business leveraging private cloud to power critical and time-sensitive business operations,” said Mr. Moribayashi.

The new Private Cloud for Enterprise service by NTT in Hong Kong and Singapore will add to their existing coverage in the United States and Europe.

“We are proactive in our development of high-performance software solutions and with Private Cloud for Enterprise, we are able to leverage the most up-to-date technology to deliver enhanced network economics to our customers,” said Ramnik Kamo, the EVP for Global Operations and CIO of Mavenir.

NTT intends to invest further in Hong Kong and Singapore to expand its capabilities to address the market needs for customised and dedicated private cloud deployments.

“Cloud is now recognized broadly by enterprises as a critical part of their IT infrastructure, and a key to enabling transformation strategies. Enterprises should view hybrid cloud as a core, strategic initiative,” said Liam Eagle, the Research Director at 451 Research, which is a part of S&P Global Market Intelligence.

In June, NTT Data, a partially-owned subsidiary of Nippon Telegraph and Telephone (NTT), also announced an alliance with Microsoft to accelerate enterprise customer’s digital transformation using Microsoft Azure as their preferred cloud solution.

Image credit: Reuters

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