VMworld is bringing out the vendors

Planning for an announcement is a challenging task. Large suppliers know that just about whatever they do will be picked up by the media and presented to the world.
Written by Dan Kusnetzky, Contributor

Planning for an announcement is a challenging task. Large suppliers know that just about whatever they do will be picked up by the media and presented to the world. Smaller vendors have a much more difficult time getting heard. So, picking the right place and time for an announcement is crucial to the success of the product launch. It's a truism that if decision-makers don't know a product exists, they won't consider it. If they don't consider it, they won't ever purchase it.

Journalists, analysts and consultants often act as intermediaries in the process. They're constantly gathering data; analyzing that data to sift out what, in their viewpoint, is important and presenting the resultant information to their community. Members of each of those groups tends to look at the world differently, use different thought models and has a different goal. It is often the case that the volume of data coming from large suppliers simply overwhelms that coming from small suppliers regardless of the strength of their technology, how innovative their thinking has been or how important the overall solution would be to a customer.

Other factors, such as free burger days at McDonalds, can overwhelm important announcements as well. A major political, economic or other news story can push everything else aside. I've personally had the experience of being responsible for the launch of a product in the Intel/UNIX space years ago that was overwhelmed by an outbreak of a disease in Asia. All of our planning was pushed aside by a virus.

So, many suppliers often hold their announcements until a major industry event occurs. They hope that the event itself will draw everyone's attention. This causes another problem - announcement overload.

To date, I've been contacted  by and/or spoken to at least twenty suppliers who are planning to announce something at VMware's VMworld. This, by the way, does not include announcement VMware is planning to make. Although I'd love to speak with each and every one of them, I simply don't have the luxury of carving twenty hours out of my schedule in the next week to speak with these suppliers about their world-saving product or service. I'm going to be attending Citrix's event (yes, I will be posting from there).

I will comment on those announcements if time and space are available. At this point, it looks like the major themes of the announcements are: management of virtualized resources, security of virtualized environments, and desktop virtualization. There are also some "cloud computing" things coming too.

I spoke with Celio Corp, a very interesting supplier of technology that might be classified as a form of desktop virtualization. I am planning to write something about the REDFLY device they've developed when there's time.  It appears that they've perfected something that has been on the edge of the industry's interest for quite some time. That is, how to utilize Smartphones as a replacement for a laptop in some applications. After all, today's smartphone has enough processing power, memory, and storge to be an access point device in a virtual access solution. Today's 3G networks are faster than the leased lines that used to be the foundation of entire corporate networks in the 1970s.

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