See You at VMworld!

I am finalizing my schedule and trying to clear my inbox in preparation for my flight out of town at the end of the week. I and somewhere around twenty thousand of my peers will soon be arriving in Las Vegas, Nevada, for VMworld 2017. I think the show this year has the potential to be a very exciting and electric conference.

VMworld is coming on the heels of some very positive financial news for VMware. The company has decided to raise its growth outlook and guidance for the fiscal second quarter and into the new year of 2018. VMware has increased expected revenue to $1.894 to $1.906 billion, an increase of around 12 to 13%. The prior guidance was $1.840 to $1.890 billion, or around a 9 to 12% increase. VMware has increased fiscal 2018 guidance from $7.61 billion, or around 7.3% year over year, to $7.83 billion, a 10% increase. It is easy to imagine, with financial news like this, that the company should be in a very good mood and quite pleased with the way things are going. I expect that this will carry over into the “vibe” of the show.

One of my top interests this year is the detailed information that should be coming out at the show in the AWS/VMware product offering announcements. It has been anticipated that VMware will present the details by the end of August, and that aligns with the conference schedule. I believe this will be a major focus during the show and throughout the week. It is worth mentioning that VMware believes that large preexisting customers will be the most likely to pursue the AWS/VMware offering. This makes me wonder what the price tag is going to be, as well as the return on investment. Will it be worth an increase in costs for service providers? I believe we will find out next week.

Speaking of AWS, there is some news to share coming out of the AWS Summit in New York City. Amazon believes that cloud demand appears favorable to the company quarter to date, with a 50% year over year growth outlook for the rest of 2017, should it be maintained. Rumor has it that Amazon has been providing partners with increased incentives in 2017 as an attempt to hold off the rise of Microsoft. Microsoft is reporting Azure growth similar to that of AWS, which leaves the competition for the monarch of the cloud in somewhat of a dead heat. We will see how things shape up as we move toward 2018.

A couple of the products in VMware’s portfolio are doing very well. I believe that there will be some focus on and push toward VMware’s NSX and vSAN technologies. Although networking brings in about 13% of VMware’s total revenue, interest in NSX remains strong. More companies appear to be moving into the implementation stage. For some of the larger companies, this will help provide options for their future and the opportunity of a more seamless hybrid cloud solution. On the flip side of that coin, storage is about 5% of the overall revenue, but interest remains high, especially as companies look at moving toward hyperconverged systems as a refresh option. Word on the street is that vSAN 6.6 has placed VMware ahead of other vendors for features and functionality.

Those are a few of the things that I expect to have my eye on. On a more personal note, during the show, my “home base,” if you will, will be the hang space in the blogger area. If you are planning on attending the show, I hope you will consider stopping by and saying hello. I really enjoy the conversations and value the learning that comes with personal interaction. I think it will be an exciting week, and I look forward to seeing many of you at VMworld.

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