At HP Enterprise's Discover, Synergy hopes to bring enterprises up to cloud speed with a hybrid push

At HP Enterprise's Discover, Synergy hopes to bring enterprises up to cloud speed with a hybrid push

At its first conference as a standalone entity, HP Enterprise is pushing its vision of a cloud that spans both the enterprise data center and a variety of competing providers, all powered by what chief executive Meg Whitman says his HP's biggest breakthrough in years. Is what HPE bring to the table enough to commit to?

“Infrastructure matters more than ever, but we need a new kind of infrastructure,” said Meg Whitman, opening up HP Enterprise’s Discover conference this week in London. “One that maximizes performances and cost. We will help build the cloud that works for you.”

It’s a bold goal, but one HP Enterprise hopes to make good on with its new Synergy architecture, one of the major focuses at HP Enterprise’s first major event since the split into independent consumer and enterprise companies.

Whitman said Synergy was HP’s biggest breakthrough in ten years, and its one the company is pinning much of its hopes on as HP Enterprise begins life as a standalone company (one that’s already fairing better than its consumer counterpart).

“You have to make leaps, not just steps, to hybrid,” said Mike Nefkens, head of HP Enterprise Services. “The best journeys are bold moves to new platforms in Software as a Service, and sometimes it’s best to move straight to cloud.”

If big customers are ready to take that leap, it could be quite profitable for HP, which is hoping that its hardware and software, and a choice among cloud providers, can combine to woo customers wary of cloud vendor (primarily Amazon) lock-in.

That’s why when HP Enterprise talks about “cloud” these days, the word “hybrid” is usually not far behind.

“The journey to hybrid is hard, but there is no doubt you have to do it to survive and thrive,” said Nefkens.

HP’s hybrid embrace no doubt accelerated as it threw up a white flag on its own cloud infrastructure, but it’s got some strong allies with that strategy, including Microsoft (Satya Nadella made a brief video appearanceence at the conference).

Early reviews of the offering, which is expected to be generally available in the second quarter of 2016, have been optimistic, in short because it allows enterprises to tap their own datacenters with the flexibility that cloud offerings provide. That means a lot more agility with a little less pricing dependence.

“That is going to allow business units to directly deploy apps without having to go to IT to get what they need,” Mike Vencel, executive vice president of Comport Consulting Corp., told CRN’s Steven Burke.

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