Enterprise hits and misses - cloud pricing and architectures mature, enterprise tech disrupts

Profile picture for user jreed By Jon Reed May 31, 2016
In this edition: advancing the cloud debates on multi-tenancy, implementation and pricing. Plus: consumer tech forces enterprise tech disruptions, and debating diversity quotas. Your whiffs include: robots flipping FUD burgers. And: $20,000-per-hour "millennial consultants"?

Cheerful Chubby Man
diginomica hit: The maturing cloud business - fresh views on multi-tenancy, pricing, and implementation, by Brian, Derek, and Phil

quotage: "What I don’t find acceptable are cloud environments where a vendor is supporting too many versions of its product and shows no backbone in standing up to large customers. Too many concessions to larger customers mean that the cost profile of the vendor goes up, innovation speed is lessened, customer service gets hampered, etc." - Brian

myPOV: Several diginomica pieces underscored how cloud debates have shifted - and cloud business models have matured. In Multi-Tenant or Multi-Instance? ServiceNow exposes the debate, Brian uses ServiceNow's multi-instance approach as a chance to revisit the multi-tenant debate that has lit up debates at conference bars - and been responsible for countless deer-in-headlights moments at analyst Q/A sessions. Brian is correct: this debate has advanced and become more useful to customers. Call it whatever tenant you want - vendors that downplay the operational costs of their chosen architecture are making a mistake. Customers know how to peel back the layers now.

Derek hits on cloud models from a different angle in Cheap doesn’t cut it – race to the bottom in cloud pricing is a “red herring”. He details new data from 451 Research that shows the commodity pricing rhetoric from the AWS vs Google vs Microsoft skirmishes doesn't tell the full story. Vendors can take assurance that value-added services make a huge impact on cloud purchases. Just how to create that value-add is the "keeps my cloud provider up at night" question.

Cloud implementation talk is maturing too - Phil gives the context in Big bang or phased roll-out? Cloud adopters speak out, a review of a recent Workday Elevate panel. The phrase "big bang" is out. In: "controlled explosion." :) Sounds like a lot more fun than configuration and testing...

Happy children eating apple
diginomica five: my top five stories on diginomica this week,

Vendor analysis, diginomica style. Here's my top choices from our vendor coverage:

  • When the lawyers speak out hilarity ensues: Oracle v Google - Den has some fun eviscerating an attorney at the firm working for Oracle on the ongoing API legal skirmish (Oracle lost this round and will likely appeal). Apart from poking holes in some ill-advised FUD, Den updates on what this means for the legal status of copyrightable APIs (clearer but far from clear).
  • Salesforce Connections – Oh, the places you (could) go… - Wait, how does Esteban keep getting invited back to these types of events? Kidding - seriously, we're glad to have the second of Esteban Kolksy's event reviews gracing these pungent pages. And he broaches a tough/necessary question about advertising-first approaches by juxtaposing event case studies - one a winner, one not-so-much.
  • SAP S/4HANA – education is the pothole that could become a chasm - Den raises the critical issue we (media types) all missed at Sapphire Now, an issue that will need to be front/center at TechEd in a few months.
  • Box woos developers to flesh out platform strategy - You can't own enterprise collaboration without developers. Kurt assesses Box's latest ecosystem maneuvers ("app-agnostic content infrastructure" for the win - try saying that three times fast.)

A few more vendor picks, without my snarky bits:

Salesforce brings smarter in-app service help to mobile, web - Phil
Host Analytics – on the growth train - Brian
Intuit Q3 FY2016 provides important insights about SMBs and the cloud - Den

Jon's grab bag -  Den owned the ol' grab bag this week, starting with Take aways from the Spring 2016 events season and case study portfolio. A sometimes manic season was illuminated by customer stories, cleansing a palette larded up by digital hype. Then there's Friday rant: the media business just got a bit interesting, Den's riff on Gawker's existential woes and the media industry's "extinction by litigation" problem.

And did we mention he is not a Fitbit fanboy? (Is Fitbit unfit by default?). Though if Den's right, it won't be sh@!ts and giggles when the joke ends up being on the consumer, as inaccurate data influences health care insurance, decisions, and so on. And if you want the story of our personalization email send glitch and lessons learned (behind us, now, on to new knee scrapes), check Sod’s Law just bit us in the ass.

Best of the rest

Waiter suggesting a bottle of wine to a customer
The enterprise technologies to watch in 2016 by Dion Hinchcliffe

quotage: "This year's round-up of enterprise technologies to watch in 2016 is more crowded than ever. This is partly due to the fact that there's just more new tech this year, and partly because the consumer-focused side of the technology industry is creating ever more disruptive advances that enterprises are simply required to face more quickly to maintain their relevancy in the market."

myPOV: Everyone is obsessed with short form content. But it's also nice to read a blog that someone put some posterior-busting time into. Hinchcliffe's roundup of enterprise tech is worth a read through. I would have found it helpful to see some wrap on which tech is hitting which industries the hardest and why, but it's a good starting list (Hinchcliffe has a graphic that does help to show maturity levels of the tech listed).

Hinchcliffe's thesis that consumer experiences are putting pressure on enterprises rings true. However, "disruptive" is in the eye of the beholder. Example: blockchain tech IS disruptive, but with only pilot projects happening, blockchain won't change business-as-usual for a while. It's a disruption you choose to take on. Of the trends listed, I'm watching open APIs and real-time stream processing. Real-time data can be overhyped, but when it matters - e.g. threat and fraud detection - it really matters. You?

Other standouts

IBM Watson Team Marks Progress, Previews Next Steps - If you're heading to the beach and can take only one analysis of IBM Watson with you, take Doug Henschen's. He details the industries/areas Watson is chasing (healthcare, IoT, and cyber security, where Watson evidently excels at flagging false positives. But Henschen dings IBM for not having customers to share tales of Watson live in production. Without those stories we're left with a big gap, one that many vendors seem to fall into on a regular basis.

That's all the standouts I'm picking... blog harder people! Here's a slew of honorable mentions:


Overworked businessman
Via Frank Scavo, these museum-goers confused a pair of glasses placed on a museum gallery floor with art. That's ok folks - sometimes marketers confuse a Powerpoint deck with customer value also.

I've frequently picked Vijay Vijayasankar's blog posts for hits and misses, despite the fact they were (usually) typed on a phone. But it's another matter entirely for a next generation of students to type all their schoolwork on a smart phone. I'm sure you could type a sequel to Ace Venture, Pet Detective on phone. But you're not sniffing Moby Dick. I'm not alone on this lonely hill of craft over convenience - Josh Bernoff of Writing Without Bullshit says "workers who write on smart phones will create crap."

I'm officially torn about McDonald’s ex-CEO: $15/hr minimum wage will unleash the robot rebellion. On one hand, A for honesty. We need these wake up calls to force the techno-optimists from their idealistic stupor and into problem-solving mode. But not sure this is the best message to workers: The robots are coming, but you can hold them off by scraping through life on substandard wages. There's a distinction between "tough love" and "tough shit" that ex-CEO Ed Rensi fails to grok. A cold shower can be good but then maybe hand someone a towel instead of a shit sandwich Big Mac.

Which #ensw pieces of merit did I miss? Let us know in the comments.

Most Enterprise hits and misses articles are selected from my curated @jonerpnewsfeed. 'myPOV' is borrowed with reluctant permission from the ubiquitous Ray Wang.


SAP, Oracle, Workday and Salesforce are diginomica premier partners as of this writing.


Image credit - Cheerful Chubby Man © RA Studio, Happy Children © Anna Omelchenko, Waiter Suggesting Bottle © Minerva Studiom, Overworked Businessman © Bloomua, Loser and Winner © ispstock - Fotolia - all from Fotolia.com.

Disclosure - SAP, Oracle, Workday and Salesforce are diginomica premier partners as of this writing.