IT Appliance Trends in 2013: Reducing IT Complexity and Improving the User Experience
I was browsing the Internet recently, viewing an IT vendor’s support page to resolve an issue I was having with my PC when I saw the headline “preventing stupid” on one of the blog threads for the vendor’s support page. The thread was about a particular feature that some of the contributors felt should be addressed with product changes while others felt the resolution was operational and intuitive with the responsibility falling to the end users. One of the written comments was “how much should be invested to prevent stupid?”
It got me thinking and I came out on the side of… invest a lot. The most successful companies in the world today are the companies that are most attentive to the client and end-user experience. What vendor’s product experiences standout for you?
Today’s IT users are looking for the most efficient means of getting their desired outcome whether it be entertainment or their job responsibilities. The more difficult and frustrating the journey – the greater the chance they will seek alternatives. The better the user experience – the more likely they will advocate to others. The more we can anticipate and invest to design out negative user experiences the greater the success of our solutions. It is not ours to judge whether the end-user should have known better but, instead, to assure the question is never raised.
Therein lies the opportunity for IT Appliances. IT Appliances are turnkey combinations of packaged hardware and software that handle specialized functions to jumpstart new technology initiatives and avoid complex, lengthy systems integration efforts. They are designed to streamline the path to desired end-user outcome while optimizing the experience along the way.
Unisys anticipates that in 2013 there will be increased interest in the IT appliance trend, in terms of both supply and demand, as CIOs look to these packages to support a number of areas that would otherwise require significant time and resources. For example, appliances can be utilized to address growing data center complexity issues in areas such as cloud infrastructure, information management and Cybersecurity.
IT appliances will increasingly bundle multiple related functions into a single appliance to provide a stronger value proposition for CIOs. For example, Big data appliances will expand beyond just analytics and cloud appliances will offer full featured stacks of functionality including robust management, provisioning and reporting capabilities. Cybersecurity appliances will take on broader footprints in areas such as sensitive data protection as part of the overall trend in Cybersecurity software towards more integrated suites of functionality.
In 2013, as more and more computing devices and intelligent sensors become connected to the cloud, there will be an increasing focus on cloud- and mobility-friendly appliances that can plug into this enterprise architecture and provide mission-critical functions with premium service levels that meet end user expectations.
IT appliances are the industry’s newest approach to improving the client experience and investing in the client experience is the most intelligent business decision IT vendors can make.