Posted by: Greg Ness | July 19, 2017

Amazon goes Hybrid with VMware

Roller coaster loops against evening sky

The Wild Ride is Getting Wilder for Tech Infrastructure Vendors

Notice is Served to More than a Dozen Tech Leaders by Once Unlikely Alliance

Recent talks between Amazon and VMware could ignite a second wave of cloud adoption, this time focused on brownfield cloud migration. A recent report covered by CNBC raises the specter of a massive shift of workloads from premises to clouds, something of notable concern to at least a dozen premises-bound tech leaders and perhaps a couple dozen third party data center players managing traditional stacks.

See my Vidder blog The Cloud is about to Crush the Hardware-based Security Industry.

This development represents a fundamental shift for Amazon and VMware, and each has their own distinct reasons for this once unlikely alliance.  Amazon finally recognizes the value of the hybrid cloud model, which it has dismissed for years. This could be as much about Amazon growth as countering Azure’s massive inroads into cloud. See a few highlights from my blog Amazon, AWS and the Public Cloud Paradox from early 2013:

As discussed previously, the total addressable market for VMware server virtualization and private cloud is about $50B dollars, per a VMware presentation made late in 2012.  Amazon’s AWS revenues, representing an estimated 90% of the public cloud market, were under $3B.  This suggests a wide gulf between the public cloud and private cloud market and an even larger $60B hybrid cloud market that is available to the victors.Kitty Hawk

That public cloud myopia on the part of Amazon, which was so prevalent at last year’s AWS reInvent Conference, is an albatross around the neck of what has otherwise been perhaps one of the most successful and revolutionary launches since… online bookselling.  Amazon’s future success may depend more upon its ability to lead the cloud market versus being a former first mover.

Amazon clearly understands that public IaaS is too limiting, and has made a series of smart improvements to its cloud offerings that align them more closely to enterprise requirements.  It is possible and reasonable to suggest that Amazon’s enhancements (along with Azure’s coming grand entrance) may have forced VMware’s hand into its own IaaS offering, much to the unease of some key VMware partners.  Yet Amazon today is still stuck in the public cloud mindset.

Then there is Amazon and the Amazing Enterprise IT Monoculture Myth:

Without denying cloud computing’s massive impact on enterprise IT, I think it isclouddisconnectimageblog still easy to get lost in the vendor haze of massive switches to any self-serving single standard or model -beyond core networking and communications stacks, which are often economically too powerful to resist, and the dynamic, pulsating world of IT services and solutions.  Innovation and conformity are not often mentioned in the same sentence as allies.

For VMware this represents a shift from its earlier cloud initiative. For background see my previous post based on a recent Cisco study and Cloud is Bigger than you Think, based on a Future in Review panel in late 2015.

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==> If you are an executive at a hardware-bound company selling gear exclusively for premises deployment this is a very big yellow light at best. And it grows the TAM for AWS by several-fold.  Stay tuned.






  1. […] week ago I wrote about the recent AWS VMware partnership and how it threatens traditional IT vendors, practices and roles. The week before I talked about […]

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