Moor Insights & Strategy Weekly Update Ending October 1, 2021

I hope you all had a great week!  

Last week, I attended Oracle Live, Pure Storage investor day, and the Amazon Devices event. Anshel and Will attended Qualcomm Smart Cities Accelerate Event.  Steve attended Storage Develop Conference.  Melody attended the Fast Company Innovation Festival and AWS WS Financial Services Analyst Summit.  Matt attended AnsibleFest and LoginVSI Summit

This week, I will be attending Box Analyst Summit, VMworld and the Micron Future of the Datacenter event (with Matt, Steve, and Will).

Our MI&S team published 18 deliverables: 

The press quoted us with 10 citations. Journalists wanted to hear about Android, Cybersecurity, Dell, Fintech, Imagination, VR, and Pure Storage. 

Quick Insights:

A.I./Machine Learning (Paul Smith-Goodson)

  • It shouldn’t be a surprise to anyone that the use of AI increased during the Covid pandemic. The Harris Poll found that 55% of companies reported accelerating their AI strategy in 2020 due to Covid, and 67% expect to accelerate their AI strategy in 2021 further. In another poll by the AI journal, about 75% of business leaders felt optimistic about AI’s future role. If a company is anticipating ramping up new AI development, although I haven’t seen surveys about AI staffing, I believe there is a good chance there will be a resource shortage for AI data scientists and engineers. 
  • AI startups seem to have no problem obtaining funding. With an increase in Zoom meetings, Read AI, a conferencing software company, just raised $10 million for its video monitoring and tracking product. Read Dashboard is Read AI’s first product.  The company’s first product, Read Dashboard, provides a dashboard for virtual meetings that uses AI to measure how the meeting is going. It can read if the participants are bored or if they are bored from talking too much. If nothing else, it will spice up a boring Zoom meeting. From my understanding, its currently a free app on Google. I don’t need AI to tell me if I’m losing the audience during a virtual meeting.

 AR/VR (Anshel Sag)

  • HTC Vive is teasing a device for October 14, which most people are unsure what it will be, but expectations are likely that it will be a lighter form factor AR or VR device

 Carrier/Wireless (Will Townsend)

  • AT&T and Corning announced a fiber deal that should allow AT&T to continue making critical infrastructure investments for its broadband business and 5G deployments. It is significant given broader supply chain challenges and the fact that it will create over 200 jobs resulting from Corning’s $150M investment. This effort should allow AT&T to maintain its commitment to being the overall fiber investment leader at $24B annually.  

Datacenter: 

  • Storage- (Steve McDowell) 
    • Vmware has a way of accelerating technology trends with just a nod of support, and that’s exactly what’s happening with its under-the-radar announcement, timed just ahead of the coming VMworld, that its future updates to vSphere and vSAN will support NVMe-over-TCP.  That’s opened the floodgates, with Dell Technologies, Lightbits Labs, and Fungible all announcing support for both the protocol and Vmware’s new features.  NetApp, an early adopter, has long offered support for the protocol.
    • This past week, Pure Storage made a series of announcements focused not on its hardware products but on the user experience.  Pure’s new Fusion provides a cloud-like manageability experience across a fleet of Pure Storage storage offerings, including its Pure-as-a-Service and Cloud Block Store.  Pure’s Portworx team also brought the ability to build push-button database-as-a-service capabilities in a Kubernetes environment. It’s refreshing to see an infrastructure taking a step back from the infrastructure bits and focusing on the user experience. Competing in a cloud-first world requires that. 
    • Cloud Data Protection player Clumio has announced what might be the first and only backup solution for Amazon’s S3 (discounting AWS’s versioning capabilities, which isn’t quite apples-to-apples).  AWS S3 sits in an interesting space. It’s often a backup target for data protection software, with the backup vendors relying on AWS’s promised 6-nines of availability. The service simply never fails. But in the modern protection world, data protection is more about the integrity of what’s being backed up than protecting against hardware failures. This is where Clumio shines, providing enterprise-level cross-account S3 data protection, bringing ‘air-gapped’ comparable protection to S3. 
    • HPE this past week unveiled a flurry of updates to its GreenLake offerings. From a storage/data perspective, most intriguing is its GreenLake for Disaster Recovery, which leverages its recently acquired Zerto technology to power new disaster recovery capabilities.  HPE also announced its GreenLake for Backup and Recovery, which brings integrated on-prem and cloud backup, snapshot, and a range of manageability capabilities for backup and restore to GreenLake.  This continues HPE’s trajectory of pushing more IT-solution-focused capabilities into GreenLake, rapidly evolving from its initial Infrastructure-as-a-Service feel. This is precisely what’s required to compete against the public cloud and even Nutanix and Vmware private cloud markets. It also shows that HPE isn’t afraid to own some technologies, such as data protection, where it has previously relied on a network of partners. Solid move.  
  • Networking- (Will Townsend) 
    • Juniper Networks recently announced a new switching product that provides an upgrade path to 400GbE and integrates its Apstra based networking software. I am impressed with several recent announcements from the infrastructure provider that continue to build its competitiveness within the enterprise networking space. As a result, for the first time in several years, Juniper is growing its overall revenue.  
  • Server- (Matt Kimball) 
    • Red Hat’s AnsibleFest was this week, and my big takeaway is that Ansible continues to push forward on IT Orchestration Automation with its Ansible Automation Platform.  Automation at scale is key, especially as organizations have reached a certain maturity state in digital transformation.  I’m a big fan of the integration of Ansible Tower that delivers tighter integration to OpenShfit. I believe this is a real demonstration of Red Hat’s understanding of and meaningful advancements in the IT Operations space.    
    • HPE made several significant GreenLake related announcements this week, focusing on edge-to-cloud, security, and analytics. I am impressed with the company’s edge-to-cloud framework – something I believe enterprise IT will find invaluable. This kind of contribution, driven by deep customer experiences, makes such an adoption framework so relevant.  
    • The company’s Ezmeral related announcements are equally impressive.  Ezmeral Unified Analytics and Data Fabric Store are addressing the issues that consume the most enterprise IT resources. Ezmeral’s relevance is seen in the rapid expansion of its ecosystem, with many new ecosystem partners being onboarded and more and more solutions being developed. 
    • The above two points tell me a couple of things. First – HPE’s investments and acquisitions over the last couple of years are paying off as the company pivots toward standing up entire solution stacks through its GreenLake services. Secondly, HPE is realizing the value of that all up stack for enterprise IT as evidenced by its continued (and increasing) focus on packaging, delivering, and promotion. 
    • Finally, can we all agree that this XaaS “thing” that Antonio Neri preached back in 2019 is, indeed, the future of IT? 
    • Dell (not so quietly) laid out a very compelling vision for automation of IT Operations last week, based on CloudIQ and delivered via APEX. This is a great vision, complemented by a technology foundation that is grounded in the real world. What I like most about the company’s vision is this – it doesn’t pretend to assume that we are just a couple of short years away from “the robots doing everything.” Instead, it considers that each IT organization is at a different level of automation and (eventual) autonomy.  And that is the real world. This will always be the case. 
    • As Cybersecurity month starts, what are you doing to drive awareness and initiate conversations with your customers as an IT Solutions vendor? I guess we’ll see over the next few weeks, but every IT executive, administrator, and practitioner I speak with raises security as a top concern.      

FinTech (Melody Brue)

  • Mastercard announced Mastercard Installments to enable consumers access to BNPL payment options, either pre-approved through API-driven mobile banking apps or instant approval at checkout. Pre-approved installment payments can be used at checkout on a merchant’s website or stored in digital wallets for use in-store anywhere Mastercard is accepted. Mastercard Installments will roll out initially in the US, UK, and Australia. According to Mastercard research, BNPL solutions increase average sales by 45% and reduce cart abandonment by 35% post-implementation. Credit card companies and card-issuing banks have increased their BNPL footprint significantly since the pandemic fueled changing consumer spending habits, accelerating BNPL adoption globally.
  • Industry trade association for data management and analytics, the Enterprise Data Management (EDM) Council, released a new Cloud Data Management Capabilities (CDMC) framework for cloud data management, providing an agreed-upon framework of a set of standards, best practices, and cloud data management capabilities for hybrid cloud and multi-cloud implementations. The CDMC workgroup includes participation from Google, IBM, Microsoft, and AWS. The standards and management of data in multi-cloud environments are particularly critical for the financial services industry in digital transformation FSIs must commit to competing with fintech and digital-first solutions.

IIoT and IoT (Bill Curtis)

  • Qualcomm Smart Cities Accelerate event – The Smart Cities Accelerator Program now has over 400 members, providing the breadth of application coverage and the technical depth needed to address this complex vertical. I like this program because it’s focused on the complexities that municipal governments experience as they plan, specify, purchase, install, and operate IoT systems. 5G is at the heart of most Smart Cities IoT opportunities, so Qualcomm can act as a “virtual CTO” for cities, recommending the best ways to piece together components across the accelerator ecosystem. Qualcomm’s accelerator business model makes sense – a key supplier organizing a complete ecosystem and providing “adult supervision” to make sure various components work together within a specific vertical industry. I predict similar models will emerge in other verticals.
  • Amazon announcements – From an IoT perspective, Amazon’s many announcements this week are significant in three ways. (1) Intelligence at the edge is rapidly increasing. The new AZ2 chip with accelerated voice and video processing powers the Echo Show 15 and the Astro “camera on wheels,” which navigates using local intelligence fed by an array of sensors. (2) Service subscriptions are becoming the norm for consumer IoT devices. The Amazon Glow chat device, Halo View fitness tracker, “Hey Disney” virtual assistant, Blink products, Luna game streaming, Ring security devices, Ring Virtual Security Guard, and Alexa Together eldercare require paid subscriptions for full functionality. XaaS simplifies adoption and lowers costs for many business applications, but the math doesn’t work the same way for consumers. XaaS could impede consumer adoption as al-la-carte service costs add up. I predict Amazon and other big players will eventually bundle services to offer consumers better deals. “Prime Plus,” anyone? (3) Most new Amazon devices are exposed to the open Internet and send personal information to the cloud, including audio and video. Concerns about security and privacy grow as the attack surface and system complexity increase with each new product release. Amazon is laser-focused on these issues, but there’s a lot that can go wrong.

Personal Computing/ Collaboration (Anshel Sag) 

  • Nreal announced the new Nreal Air, which appears to be a pair of smartglasses with somewhat limited capabilities but only 77g in weight; this is days after the company announced an additional $100M in funding
  • Pico launched the Neo 3 Pro and the Neo 3 Pro Eye, which bring improvements intense competition to Oculus and HTC on the heels of the TikTok acquisition announcement last month.
  • Samsung has finally pulled ads from its apps, which the company promised to do, pleasing many fans.
  • Pixel phones have a feature that automatically records and uploads a video in an emergency; all the user has to do is press the power button five times. This feature was already in early versions of Android 12 beta but is now entering the mainstream.
  • I’ve been using Facebook’s Ray-Ban Stories smart glasses, and I’ve been both impressed and disappointed by them, which currently describes my feelings towards most smart glasses I’ve seen or used in the last year or two.
  • The Qualcomm Smart Cities Accelerate event demonstrated to me that Qualcomm understands what applications are most needed by cities and how it needs to be both a partnership and a complete solution. I was also surprised by how much appears to be riding on the CBRS spectrum for 5G private networks and how that seems to be the backbone of connectivity in addition to dark fiber to build these smart cities.

Quantum Computing (Paul Smith-Goodson)

  • QC Ware, one of the leading quantum algorithm developers, raised $25 million in Series B funding from Koch Industries and Covestro with participation from Samsung Ventures and returning investors Citi, the D. E. Shaw group, and Pegasus Tech Ventures. QC Ware plans to expand its quantum development team to support the accelerated development of Forge, a SaaS quantum computing software platform. QC Ware has a growing number of global customers, including Aisin Group, Airbus, Air Force Research Laboratory, BMW Group, Equinor, and Goldman Sachs. Given the recent activity, it wouldn’t surprise me to learn QC Ware is thinking about some type of public offering over the next 6 to 12 months. 
  • Quantum history will be made on Friday, October 1, when IonQ begins trading on the New York Stock Exchange under the ticker symbol IONQ for its common stock. It will be the first listed pure-play quantum computing company. Moor Insights & Strategy has extensively covered its progress and presented an analysis of its long-term business and technology roadmap in Forbes.com. There have been several more quantum technology SPACs created in IonQ’s wake.  

Security (Will Townsend)

  • Retailer Neiman Marcus Group recently reported that 4.6 million customers might have had its online accounts obtained by a third party in May. This breach is another example that points to the continued challenges in maintaining proper security hygiene. The retailer has engaged Mandiant to investigate the hack, the same company that T-Mobile uses related to its breach. Mandiant is evolving into the go-to company for forensic investigations and is a company to watch.     

Columns Published (Forbes, eWEEK, UPLOAD VR, and others)        

  1. Vanguard- Reimagining The Retirement Experience, Again, by Patrick Moorhead
  2. Samsung Galaxy Watch4 Review, by Patrick Moorhead
  3. Qualcomm Snapdragon Insiders Smartphone Review, by Patrick Moorhead
  4. Amazon Announces New Product Categories, Improvements, And Updates At Devices Event, by Patrick Moorhead
  5. Jim Whitehurst Joins Board Of Digital Product Optimization Company Amplitude, by Patrick Moorhead
  6. Amazon Connect Makes Two New Quick And Efficient Capabilities Generally Available For Call Centers, by Patrick Moorhead
  7. Pure Storage Continues To Simplify Data Management, by Steve McDowell
  8. Oracle’s New Exadata X9M Looks Disruptive, by Steve McDowell

Blogs Published (MI&S)                                                              

  1. HP Inc. Rolls Out New Management Services For The Hybrid World That’s Here To Stay, by Patrick Moorhead
  2. Poly Adds Two Zoom-Certified Devices To Its Video Conferencing Portfolio, by Patrick Moorhead
  3. Box Relay Is Box’s Secret Weapon In Enterprise Digital Transformation, by Patrick Moorhead
  4. Spark New Zealand Implements Agile Work Practices To Embrace Business Change, by Patrick Moorhead
  5. GlobalFoundries Signs Qualcomm Deal And Shows Why There’s More To Silicon Than Node Geometry, by Patrick Moorhead
  6. Zoom Announces New And Interesting Services And Features At Zoomtopia 2021, by Patrick Moorhead
  7. IonQ Delivers A New Architecture And Glass Quantum Computer Chip A Year Earlier Than Expected, by Paul Smith-Goodson

Research Paper(s):

  • N/A

Podcasts:

The G2 on 5G by Moor Insights & Strategy, with Anshel Sag and Will Townsend

  • The G2 on 5G Podcast – Episode 69 – October 3, 2021
    • Will’s insights into the Qualcomm Smart Cities Accelerate Event
    • New Dish 5G Phone – Celero5G for Boost and comes with a year of free service up to 35GB a month
    • BT seems bullish on drone trials and use cases with Project XCelerate – how will 5G play a role?
    • Samsung mmWave subway trial shows huge benefits to Wi-Fi performance, up to 1.8 Gbps in Seoul
    • AT&T and Corning fiber deal – what is the impact on AT&T’s broadband business and 5G deployments?
    • New York State opens a 5G drone testing range/corridor to improve 5G UAS technologies in a 100-square-mile testing zone

DataCentric Podcast by Moor Insights & Strategywith Matt Kimball and Steve McDowell

  • N/A

The Six-Five Podcast by Moor Insights & Strategy and Futurum Research, with Patrick Moorhead and Daniel Newman

Moor Insights & Strategy Podcast

 Press Citations: 

  1. Android / Androidcentral https://www.androidcentral.com/usbc-eu-apple-android-universal-charger (Anshel Sag)
  2. Cybersecurity / LFNetworking https://www.lfnetworking.org/blog/2021/09/28/lf-networking-community-collaborates-to-counter-growing-cybersecurity-threats/ (Will Townsend)
  3. Dell / Inforney https://www.inforney.com/texas/dell-technologies-drives-the-evolution-of-modern-support-and-security/article_859df578-c3c4-5917-bdac-dcdbf8582f14.html
  4. Dell / Yahoo Finance https://finance.yahoo.com/news/dell-technologies-drives-evolution-modern-130000037.html
  5. Dell / Siliconangle https://siliconangle.com/2021/09/28/dell-debuts-new-standard-high-speed-software-defined-storage-connectivity/ (Steve McDowell)
  6. Dell / Techxmedia https://techxmedia.com/dell-technologies-drives-a-new-era-of-modern-support-and-security/
  7. Fintech / Protocol https://www.protocol.com/newsletters/protocol-fintech/robinhood-crypto-wallet-strategy?rebelltitem=1#rebelltitem1 (Melody Brue)
  8. Imagination / TheTelegraph https://www.telegraph.co.uk/technology/2021/09/26/imaginations-designs-london-listing-face-hurdles/  (Anshel Sag) 
  9. VR / Androidcentral https://www.androidcentral.com/vr-doesnt-need-big-publishers-they-ruin-everything-anyway (Anshel Sag)
  10. Pure Storage / SDXCentral https://www.sdxcentral.com/articles/news/pure-storage-debuts-storage-as-code-platform/2021/09/  (Steve McDowell)

New Gear or Software We are Using and Testing that is Public Knowledge 

  • AMD RX 6600XT
  • Apple iPhone 13 mini
  • Dell UltraSharp Webcam 4K
  • HP Reverb G2 Omnicept
  • Poly P15
  • Samsung Galaxy buds 2, Galaxy Watch 4, Galaxy Z Fold3 5G, and the Galaxy Z Flip3 5G, Galaxy Watch4 Classic 46mm
  • TCL 20 Pro 5G
  • Xilinx Kria KV260 Vision AI Kit

Events MI&S Plans on Attending In-Person or Virtually (New) 

  • October 2021
    • Box Analyst Summit, October 6 (Patrick Moorhead)
    • VMWorld, October 5-7 (Matt Kimball, Steve McDowell, Patrick Moorhead, Will Townsend)
    • NAB 2021, October 10-13, Las Vegas, in person (Steve McDowell) 
    • Nutanix .NEXT,  October 12-14 (Matt Kimball, Steve McDowell)
    • Dell Tech Summit, October 12-14 (Patrick Moorhead)  
    • Google Cloud Next 21, October 12-14 (Matt Kimball, Will Townsend, Patrick Moorhead)
    • Brooklyn 5G Summit – October 18-19 (Will Townsend)
    • IEEE Quantum Week Oct 18-22 (Paul Smith-Goodson)
    • Arm DevSummit 2021, October 19-21 (Anshel Sag, Matt Kimball, Paul Smith-Goodson, Patrick Moorhead)
    • ONUG 2021, October 20-21 (Steve McDowell)
    • NetApp Insight, October 20 (Steve McDowell)
    • Arm DevCon, October 21 (Matt Kimball)
    • AT&T Business Summit – October 25 (in-person- moderating a panel) (Will Townsend)
    • Energy Drone & Robotics Summit, October 25-27 (Steve McDowell)
    • REMOVE AT&T Business Summit, Dallas, October 25-27 (Steve McDowell)
    • IntelON and Analyst event, San Francisco, Oct 26-28 (Matt Kimball, Paul Smith-Goodson, Patrick Moorhead)
    • MWC Los Angeles – October 26-28 (Will Townsend)
    • Intel Innovation (IntelON), October 28 (Matt Kimball)
  • November
    • MVNO World Berlin – November 2-3 (in person) (Will Townsend)
    • The Most Powerful Women in Banking (virtual), Nov 3-5 (Melody Brue)
    • MSFT Ignite, November 4, (Matt Kimball)
    • The Most Powerful Women in Banking, Melody Brue), Nov 3-5
    • NVIDIA GTC, Nov 8-11 (Patrick Moorhead, Paul Smith-Goodson)
    • AWE USA 2021 – Santa Clara – Nov 9-11 (Anshel Sag)
    • Nokia GAF – November 15-18 (Will Townsend)
    • Lenovo Advisory Council, November 16-18 (Patrick Moorhead) 
    • Red Hat Analyst Dat, November 18 (Matt Kimball)
    • 5G Techritory Latvia – November 22-25 (in person) (Will Townsend)
    • AWS re:Invent – November 29-December 5 (Will Townsend, Patrick Moorhead)
    • Snapdragon Tech Summit, Nov 30-Dec 2, Hawaii (Patrick Moorhead, Anshel Sag)
  • December
    • Marvell industry analyst day, December 7 (Patrick Moorhead)
  • January
    • CES 2022, Jan 5-7, Las Vegas (Anshel Sag, Patrick Moorhead)

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The Team 

Analysts, Analysts In-Residence, Contributors

  1. Patrick Moorhead, Founder, CEO, Chief Analyst; Broad technology coverage plus deep insights into Cloud & SaaS, Personal Computing, Semiconductors, Automotive 
  2. Bill Curtis, Analyst In-Residence, IIoT, and Deep IoT Technology 
  3. Matt Kimball, Principal Analyst, Datacenter Servers, CI, and HCI 
  4. Melody Brue, Principal Analyst, Financial Tech
  5. Steve McDowell, Principal Analyst, Datacenter Storage, and Storage Technologies 
  6. Anshel Sag, Principal Analyst; V.R., P.C. Gaming, Mobile Platforms 
  7. Paul Smith-Goodson, Principal Analyst; Machine Learning, A.I. and Quantum Computing 
  8. Will Townsend, Principal Analyst; Security, Carrier Services, Networking 
  9. Chris Wilder, Contributor, Security 
  10. OPEN, Smart Home 

Operations 

  1. Dan Pickens, Business Director 
  2. Paula Moorhead, Marketing Director, Website, and Social Media 
  3. Walker Pickens, Media Relations, and Writer 
  4. Zane Pickett, Office Manager, A.P., AR, travel, writer 
  5. Lee LeClercq Williams, Business Associate 
  6. Jacob Freyman, Writer, and Researcher