HP Dims the Lights on Its Helion Public Cloud

Amy Larsen DeCarlo
Amy Larsen DeCarlo

Summary Bullets:

  • HP’s fits and starts in the cloud continued this week with its disclosure in a blog that the company will sunset its Helion public cloud offer in January.
  • Unable to compete against the hyperscale tier cloud providers, HP is choosing to redouble its efforts in private cloud – and in selling hardware and software to IaaS providers across the public/private spectrum.

HP is making a fast exit from the public cloud sphere. Outmaneuvered by cloud behemoths like AWS and Microsoft which can outcompete HP consistently on price and agility in the IaaS realm, HP has decided to take its Helion public cloud solution off the market in January 2016. In a blog post this week, Bill Hiff, Senior Vice President and General Manager for HP Cloud, said that while HP is committed to helping customers manage their infrastructures across the traditional IT and private and public cloud spectrums, it was time to make a change.

Responding to intense pressures in a quickly evolving market, Hiff wrote, “We have made the decision to double-down on our private and managed cloud capabilities.” He added that HP will continue its development and marketing efforts in its HP Helion OpenStack platform as it focuses its resources on managed and virtual private cloud. With respect to public cloud, Hiff pointed to its work with ecosystem partners, specifically calling out an expanding relationship with Amazon Web Services as well as noting “we have worked with Microsoft to support Office 365 and Azure.”

The Helion sunset announcement comes at a time when cloud consolidation/rationalization is transforming the competitive landscape. This month alone, big cloud-related deals abounded with Dell announcing it was working with investors to buy EMC. And earlier this week, Windstream disclosed it is selling its data center business to TierPoint.

At the same time, cloud providers are also expanding their partnerships as a means to close capability gaps and extend their reach into new sectors. In the last week, Rackspace and Accenture each announced separate partnerships with AWS. Rackspace is also teaming up with Equinix. And Microsoft and Dell are working together on a new hybrid cloud service.

In light of the tough competition and the expense associated with operating a cloud environment designed to scale to meet peak demands, the consolidation is hardly surprising. Nor is it probably over as speculation runs rampant about which provider will be the next to step out of the cloud in some fashion.

So, what are your thoughts on HP’s decision to step out of the public cloud? And is the recent M&A activity impacting your cloud investment decisions in any way?

What do you think?

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