Docker, Arm partner to streamline development for cloud, edge and IoT

The partnership aims to combine the simplicity and portability of Docker's container platform with Arm's scope and scale across different compute environments.
Written by Stephanie Condon, Senior Writer

Docker and Arm on Wednesday announced a new strategic partnership, focused on facilitating the seamless development and delivery of applications across the cloud, edge and IoT. The partnership aims to combine -- for the benefit of developers and enterprises -- the simplicity and portability of Docker's container platform with Arm's scope and scale across different compute environments.

Right out of the gate, the two companies are showcasing the way developers will benefit from the partnership. At DockerCon, Docker's container industry conference, Arm and Docker will demonstrate the integration of Arm capabilities into Docker Desktop Community. The integration will be available to the approximately two million developers using Docker Desktop through a technical preview.

"Even on an x86 laptop, all the commands they know about Docker, in terms of building containers, shipping them and running them, are now enabled for Arm," David Messina, EVP strategic alliances at Docker, explained to ZDNet.

Additionally, once a developer is ready to push an application into production, they'll be able to take advantage of a secure Docker Enterprise Engine for Arm-based Amazon EC2 A1 instances. This should allow organizations to achieve up to 45 percent cost savings when running their cloud-native applications on Arm compared with x86, without having to rewrite any code. Meanwhile, developers get commercial support from Docker.

"Docker's developers have often led the charge for speed and innovation within the enterprise," Messina said. "Here's an opportunity for them to also drive a major ROI in terms of application development."

One of the drivers of this partnership, Messina said, was the demand from Docker's enterprise customers for one development platform to extend applications to the edge. The Docker developer community has "dabbled in the edge" for a while, he said, "but this is the first time collectively, because of this partnership, we're going to be able to do that at scale."

Meanwhile, as part of the partnership, the two companies are also making Docker-based solutions available to the Arm developer ecosystem as part of the Arm Neoverse platform. This integration means millions of Arm developers can now leverage Docker-based solutions to build and deploy their applications more quickly and easily across a range of applications.

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"When we go to engage customers and partners in the ecosystem, part of what we're saying is, if you want portability, a simplified workflow as part of developing on your system, Docker is ready to go," Mohamed Awad, VP of Infrastructure Business at Arm, said to ZDNet.

The Neoverse platforms are designed to power infrastructure from the data center to the edge, on the premise that general-purpose compute infrastructure won't be able to handle the huge amounts of data generated in the near future.

By leveraging Docker technology, "we can quickly take workloads and let compute happen where it needs to happen, when it needs to happen, on whatever node it needs to happen on," Awad said. 

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