Hewlett-Packard today talked up new services designed to push cloud adoption among enterprise IT departments. The HP Cloud Discovery Workshop and HP Cloud Roadmap Service are meant to show customers how cloud computing works and then design strategies to further adoption using HP products.
The IT computing behemoth is promoting these cloud computing consulting services because -- although interest is high -- adoption of standard cloud computing technologies such as data center virtualization and self-service remains low, according to Hewlett-Packard Co. That's only natural, says cloud computing analyst Dan Kusnetzky of the New York-based technology research company the 451 group.
"Basically, IT people are charged with keeping the status quo, because the possibility for changes introduces the chances that things will stop working," he said. HP wants to soften this built-in resistance, he added.
HP attempts to set a 'cloud standard'
"It's in HP's interest to make cloud computing the standard way" enterprises adopt new technologies and plan their IT organizations, he said. Kusnetzky also said that HP is testing the waters in some areas. "They are not as experienced in delivering complete infrastructure services as [other] managed service providers are."
HP faces mounting competition, as IBM and others offer cloud consulting and hardware and software packages designed to help customers create their own clouds. Consulting giant CSC also threw its hat in the ring earlier this year, promising "cloud orchestration" services. HP's acquisition of services giant EDS last year could be an important factor in its cloud services push.
HP points to its long record in delivering Software as a Service. Jamie Erbes, the CTO of software and solutions at HP, said it has a nine-year track record and more than 700 customers for its software services. She said the aim is not to pigeonhole cloud computing, but broaden the service model.
"Rather than segregating everything into cloud, our philosophy is that eventually everything is a service," said Erbes. She pointed to HP's printing services and EDS as two examples. Erbes said that HP is seeing demand pressure in services and will continue to roll out public-cloud services and private-cloud development services.
That's a tempting model for HP, Kusnetzky said. "On one level, it would be nice to sell services where people would pay annuity revenue" for a product that they would otherwise pay for only once.
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