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5 Channel Partner Updates: Tuesday 02 January 2018

Good morning, channel partners. Here are five technology news updates, insights, chatter, and plenty more to start your day for Tuesday, January 2, 2018.

Actually, there are 15 timely updates designed for VARs, managed services providers (MSPs), cloud services providers (CSPs), independent software vendors (ISVs), telco master agents and telco agents to sip on. Take a look:

15. Apple Apologizes: Facing lawsuits and consumer outrage after it said it slowed older iPhones with flagging batteries, Apple is slashing prices for battery replacements and will change its software to show users whether their phone battery is good, Reuters notes.

14. Huawei Smartphone Concerns: China’s Huawei Technologies on December 29 flagged overall and smartphone revenue figures for 2017 that represented its slowest growth in four years, and vowed to extend its global reach with more premium products next year, according to this report. Meanwhile, Chinese police are investigating Huawei after one of the company’s top smartphone sales leaders was detained on suspicion of accepting bribes…

13. Browser Wars Revisited: A mobile browser rarely used in the West has outflanked Google’s Chrome in some of Asia’s fastest-growing markets, giving owner Alibaba Group Holding an advantage in the race among technology giants to capture the next generation of internet users, The Wall Street Journal says. Hundreds of millions of people in India, Indonesia and other emerging markets getting online for the first time are picking UC Browser, owned by Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba, over ones made by U.S. rivals, the report asserts.

12. Tech Prostitution?: A Newsweek investigative report pinpoints how employees at major tech companies used their business email addresses to allegedly solicit prostitutes…

11. First Responder Network: AT&T says all 50 U.S. states will embrace the company’s new public safety network. The network is part of a $6.5 billion government contract, Reuters says. The FirstNet broadband network will allow public safety workers to communicate directly through voice, text, data and video. In emergency situations when cell towers are overloaded, communication to and from emergency personnel will take priority over calls from the public, ChannelE2E noted in 2017.

10. Massive Network Operations Center: Aiming to improve the approach of the company for digital transformation, Saudi Telecom Company (STC) is striving to build “the most major network operations center in the Middle East,” according to MENAFN.

9. M&A – Analytics: Scaleworks has acquired Keen IO, which lets companies easily build and embed all sorts of analytics for teams and customers — and often powers the dashboards in your favorite SaaS tools, the companies claim.

8. M&A – Managed Services: Windstream Communications is acquiring MASS Communications (MassComm), a CLEC that offers voice, data, risk management, SD-WAN, managed security and network monitoring services. The deal is a potential positive sign for Windstream, which suffered layoffs and a surprise dividend cut in 2017 that rocked shareholder confidence in the company.

7. Talent – IT Services Layoffs: India’s IT services industry experienced roughly 56,000 layoffs in 2017. The accelerating shift from on-premises applications toward cloud services triggered many of the cuts. Some folks worry artificial intelligence and machine learning will drive additional layoffs in 2018, though many of India’s top IT services firms are taking steps to strengthen their expertise in those emerging areas…

6. Partnership – MSP Automation: InterCloud Systems has integrated its Netlayer.io software platform with Computer Associates‘ software. The result? MSPs gain end-to-end orchestration and monitoring functions for next-gen virtualized networking environments such as SDN, NFV, and SD-WAN, the companies claim. Side note: More than 600 mid-market MSPs attended CA World in 2017

5. Cisco SMB Momentum: Cisco Systems‘ momentum in the SMB channel appears to be gaining momentum worldwide. In addition to a ConnectWise partnership driving MSP engagements in the United States, Cisco also added 5,000 SMB customers in India for 2017, according to Economic Times. We’ll share deeper details soon.

4. Predictions Reality Check: Even a sage like Venture Capitalist Fred Wilson sometimes overlooks big trends. In a reality check blog, Wilson looks back on his 2017 predictions and actual outcomes — conceding that he “completely whiffed” on the breakout year for crypto, though his 2015 and 2016 predictions mentioned the technology. But the biggest trend of 2017 in the U.S.? The beginning of the end for white male dominance, Wilson asserts.

3. Partner Conferences: The partner summit conference season kicks off next week with Citrix Summit 2018 in southern California. It’s a key moment for Citrix, which had layoffs and some product focus tweaks in late 2017. More: Track the Top 50 Channel Partner Conferences for 2018 here, or add your partner conference to our industry leading calendar.

2. Welcome Back: We missed penning this daily “5 things” blog during the holidays. We’re happy to be back, and happy to have you joining as we continue to track your Entrepreneur to Exit journey each day here on ChannelE2E. Got questions or feedback? Email me: Joe@AfterNines.com.

1. Top 100 Vertical Market MSPs: Complete the survey here and your company could be ranked as a Top 100 Vertical Market MSP when we unveil results later this quarter. Deadline for participation is Friday, January 12.

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