VMworld 2021 is now just days away. On October 6 and 7 in (Asia Pacific), catch the legendary event once more as it comes to you online.
This year's event features actors Will Smith and Michael J. Fox, speakers from Planetary Protection, Not Impossible Labs, Peloton, Microsoft Research, and VMware CEO Raghu Raghuram and VMware president Sumit Dhawan.
Ahead of the event, we spoke to Ingram Micro New Zealand's business manager Advanced Solutions, Adam Saunders, to find out why this year's event should not be missed.
Saunders says this year's event offers plenty of variety in terms of speakers and sessions catering for businesses and management and the more technical sessions, but at the heart of it all is a simple premise: VMware understands that technology exists to support the business.
"While technical sessions are attractive to engineers, it's only when technology can deliver tangible business benefits that technology becomes a worthwhile investment."
VMware's mantra 'delivering IT at the speed of business' helped many organisations and government departments activate their digital strategies without delays.
"VMware looked to break a lot of those chains that were holding businesses back. If a business or government department said this is our strategy, this is our policy, or this is where we are going, they don't want the IT department to say, 'sure we will come back in 6 -12 months with the start of a plan'. Instead, the business is looking for IT to get onboard and start delivering as soon as the business needs it. That's what 'delivering IT at the speed of business' means."
Take a glance at VMworld 2021's agenda and it's clear VMware is wholly committed to delivering its bread-and-butter services through more than 30,000 partners to more than 500,000 customers. This year, VMware is also adding something more: What could businesses do if nothing was holding them back? Those questions are encompassed in the theme of VMworld 2021: 'Imagine That'.
Saunders says, "It's about being free to create. It brings to mind many 'what if' statements - what if I could do this in my business, what if I changed this... it inspires us to be creative and to imagine how creative use of technology could change the game."
Saunders' point is particularly poignant for businesses in industries with growing levels of technology adoption, particularly in the primary sector.
He explains, "There are a number of business sectors that are not traditionally viewed as large users of IT/technology such as construction, forestry, transport, and agriculture where we are seeing growing adoption of technology to either improve productivity, enhance customer experience, or make smarter business decisions," he says.
"One of the key things is that if your business is not aware of what's going on in technology, there is a danger you'll be overtaken by those who are aware and taking action. Businesses need a roadmap for embracing technology."
VMworld 2021 will cover app modernisation, edge, and end-user services to multicloud, networking, and security. Saunders says this is particularly interesting because these aren't traditionally areas associated with VMware - this alone is a key reason to head along.
"VMware is known as a core server infrastructure virtualisation vendor and it's a large part of their business, but the company is broadening its portfolio as technology needs have changed. These new areas are perhaps VMware's best kept secret. For example, VMware is doing amazing things in app modernisation through Kubernetes and Tanzu."
He adds, "People should attend to find out what else VMware is up to, what value they can get from VMware through not just bespoke products, but an integrated and interoperable stack. VMware has done all of the integration work that brings together solutions with many bespoke components.
VMworld also brings in other companies like Amazon, Google, and Microsoft that, in the past, would have been considered competitors.
"They are all key participants in VMworld because they see the benefits of being part of a large ecosystem."
And as for the partnership between Ingram Micro and VMware, Saunders says the two companies are 100% committed to each other, their partners and customers.
"It's about bringing all of these solutions together. And the advantage of an online event running in different time zones is that there's more flexibility than ever in terms of going along to sessions that you want to attend."
What: VMworld 2021
When: 6-7 October 2021 (Asia Pacific)