Hewlett-Packard and Microsoft announce at the Interop Las Vegas conference a four-year strategic global initiative to deliver an end-to-end unified communications and collaboration solution.
at the Interop Las Vegas conference May 19
announced "a four-year strategic global initiative to deliver an
end-to-end unified communications and collaboration solution."
The May 19 announcement is an expansion of the companies' Frontline
Partnership, and is a deal in which "the two companies expect to invest up
to an additional $180 million in product development [and] professional
services, as well as joint sales and marketing, to help organizations lower cost
and improve productivity," particularly in tough economic times, Microsoft
and HP said in a news release.
"Customers can lower costs and rapidly enhance employee productivity
with unified communications and collaboration from HP and Microsoft," Ann
Livermore, executive vice president of HP's Technology Solutions Group, said in
a statement. "We provide customers with solutions that are rich, intuitive
and accessible from anywhere on nearly any device." According the release:
The end-to-end solution, which is planned
to span software, hardware, networking and services, would enable customers to
improve business output and reduce travel, [telecommunications] and IT
operating costs. This would be accomplished by streamlining communications
across messaging, video and voice with connected applications and devices. HP
and Microsoft also plan to provide the flexibility and control customers need
to manage their communications infrastructure efficiently.
"Together, we are offering the extensive breadth of capabilities of our
respective technologies to deliver a truly unified communications and
collaboration solution to help our customers improve business
productivity," Stephen Elop, president of the Microsoft Business Division,
said in a statement. "This means one click to communicate, one click to
conference, one click to collaborate."
"Microsoft's approach to unified communications and collaboration
solutions, combined with HP's global technology and services, will help us
drive innovation and growth in our business," Tina Atkinson, program
sponsor for New Ways of Working with Cathay Pacific Airways, said in the
release. "Cathay Pacific Airways followed a detailed tender process and
chose Microsoft and HP because they best met our requirements for a flexible
and comprehensive approach to unified communications and collaboration,
tailored to our needs."
Moreover, the companies said, "Demand for unified communications and
collaboration technologies is growing rapidly. According to an independent
report from Forrester Research, 84 percent of enterprises in North
America and Europe are currently
evaluating, piloting or implementing unified communications and collaboration
solutions, and the market is expected to grow at a rate of 35.9 percent through
In a March report, research company IDC
forecast that a steady unified communications adoption rate will continue in
2009, as organizations look to reduce OPEX (operational expenditure) costs
while at the same time improving productivity and efficiency.
"Unified communications has become a fast-growing solution adopted by
businesses of all sizes for various reasons including improved productivity and
lower OPEX. Although UC is considered to be a horizontal product that is
applicable to all businesses, there have been adoption time lags by some
verticals in the Australian market, which we believe will catch up in
2009," said Jason Leung, a telecommunications market analyst for IDC
"As overall total cost of ownership (TCO)
and return on investment (ROI) culminate [in] favorable prospects for many
businesses, the undeniable conclusion in most instances is a case of not if but
when UC should be adopted," Leung added.
Meanwhile, in terms of product development and integration, HP and Microsoft
said they will "form joint teams to collaborate on products and services
development across Microsoft Office SharePoint Server, Microsoft Exchange
Server and Microsoft Office Communications Server, as well as HP ProCurve
networking products. HP will obtain Microsoft Unified Communications
qualification for the HP dx9000 TouchSmart Business PC and select smartphones.
... [and] HP Business Technology Optimization (BTO) software will provide
additional support for Microsoft Office Communications Server," among
Regarding professional services, Microsoft and HP will "offer a full
set of business productivity services ranging from assessment, architecture
planning and design to implementation, monitoring, management and support for
software, hardware, network, server, storage and infrastructure components in
the shared portfolio. HP will dedicate a global team of service professionals
to support the joint solutions, helping customers achieve improved levels of
network availability and response times. HP and Microsoft will also target
communications service providers ... provide services for customers ... and
work together to address customers' real-time collaboration needs," the
Also, Microsoft and HP will "assign dedicated salespeople to their
joint solutions and train several thousand technical and delivery personnel,"
among other moves in the sales and marketing arena
More information about the HP and Microsoft initiative is available here.
More information about Microsoft unified communications and collaboration
technologies is available here.