Dell sees the enterprise IT shifting to a hybrid, multi-cloud, everything-as-a-service market and has a new strategy to help it address the shift. At the Dell Technologies World 2020 digital event, Dell announced Project APEX, a new strategy aimed at unifying the company’s cloud and “as-a-service” (aaS) offerings under one umbrella.
“Project Apex will ultimately deliver the industry’s most flexible and simplest as-a-service experience for on premises infrastructure,” Sam Grocott, senior vice president of Dell Technologies Business Units Marketing, said.
As part of its Project APEX vision, Dell announced three new products and a new pricing plan:
Cloud Console (coming 1H2021): Cloud Console (or DT Cloud Console) is a new online platform that serves as a dashboard and command center through which customers can manager their cloud and as-a-Service systems. Using the console, companies can manage, optimize, and expand their existing cloud resources (public, edge, or private) as necessary. Customers will also be able to shop for new cloud products and services through a single marketplace, order services as needed, and deploy workloads and solutions. Cloud Console will be available in Public Preview starting Oct. 21, 2020, and Dell expects it to be fully available in the first half of 2021.
Storage as-a-Service (coming 1H2021): Dell Technologies Storage-as-a-Service is a self-service, turn-key storage offering that is deployed on-premise but managed and owned by Dell or one of its partners. Customers will be able to select an SLO (capacity, performance, availability) for the storage service they want and complete the purchase through the DT Cloud Console. Dell’s Storage-as-a-Service solution will be available in the first half of 2021.
Cloud Platform Workload Instances: Dell Technologies Cloud Platform is getting instance-based configurations that customers can use to purchase and deploy on-premise, cloud resources. Using the Cloud Console, cusomters can select an instance type based on a specific workload (such as a VDI environment), pick the number of instances they need, and pick the subscription term. All the hardware, software and service components (including deployment cost) and included in a single per-instance, monthly price.
“Customers no longer have to guess how many nodes or how many RAs that they’re going to need to run this environment,” Grocott said. “They’re going to focus more on the workload requirements. And this is delivered with a single price.”
Pre-approved Flex on Demand Pricing: Dell wants to simply pricing across its entire Infrastructure Solutions Group (ISG) and Flex On Demand pricing will offer customers predefined configurations based on common workloads. Companies can then customize configurations (servers, storage, data protection, etc.) and pick between 1- to 5-year contract terms and three capacity commitment levels. All hardware, system software, and essential services are included in the price. Dell channel partners will be able to resell Flex on Demand pricing.
Dell Project APEX will get vertical as-a-Service offerings in the future
Once Dell rolls out Cloud Console and Storage-as-a-Service in the first half of 2021, the company will be expanding Project APEX with other vertical as-a-Service, such as Compute-as-a-Service (COMPUTEaaS), PC-as-a-Service (PCaaS), Data Protection-as-a-Service (DPaaS), SAPaaS and VDI-as-a-Service.
“So we’re very, very excited about being able to deliver this APEX as-a-service experience,” Grocott said. “We think it’s going to deliver the simplicity, the choice, and the consistent operating model that customers are looking for as they look to simplify their on-premises infrastructure and extend out to a multi-cloud public cloud environment.”