Cisco's technology head honcho used day two of the vendor's partner summit to urge VARs to protect their profitability by embracing its vision of technology architectures.
On a morning dominated by tech trends, the leader of the VCE alliance also explained to attendees why there is "a 100 per cent chance" of cloud becoming the next key industry shift over the next three to five years.
Padmasree Warrior, chief technology officer at Cisco, told partners that getting on board with the vendor's move to an architectural, rather than solution-based, focus was imperative.
"The partner opportunity is to really recognise our technology leadership and architectural innovation -whether it is real-time voice, video or leadership in data; whether it is virtual or physical environments -[the opportunity is] combining them and translating them into customer value so your margins and profitability increase going forward," she explained.
She added that the small business architecture - one of six defined by the networking giant - gave partners a big chance to cash in on a deep understanding of Cisco's technology.
"Small business is one segment that doesn't want to talk to the CTO; they do not care about technology architectures," added Warrior. "They want it to work, to be simple and to be easy to use. It is more important to push the business architecture."
Unsurprisingly, cloud talk was also a big feature of the second day of Cisco's worldwide partner get-together, taking place in New Orleans this week. Warrior claimed that the consumer world is fuelling changes in the way enterprises deploy technology.
"What is driving [industry] trends? First and foremost it is the rising expectations that we as users have for robust, personalised experiences that cross the boundaries between work and home," she said.
Michael Capellas, chief executive of VMware, Cisco and EMC's VCE joint venture, told attendees that various consumer trends spoke to the absolute certainty of cloud becoming the next big industry trend over the next five years. He suggested that there would be three basic cloud models: public clouds; single-vendor private clouds, based around Oracle, HP or IBM stacks; and best-of-breed virtualised private clouds, from based around technology from the VCE players and Intel.
Public clouds will account for "no more than 20 per cent" of deployments, he predicted.
"[A public cloud] assumes that, for all applications, there is a single quality of service," added Capellas. "Good luck if you're trying to differentiate application performance. But there is a place for it."
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