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5 Channel Partner Updates: Thursday 03 August 2017

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Good morning, channel partners. Here are five technology news updates, insights, chatter, and plenty more to start your day for Thursday, August 3, 2017.

Actually, there are 17 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:

17. Fiber Optic Deja Vu?: Shares in Macom Technology Solutions, a fiber optics specialist, plummeted nearly 25 percent yesterday after the company announced a big revenue shortfall. It sort of reminds me of the dot-com bubble nearly two decades ago... when a bunch of fiber companies conceded that their businesses weren't nearly as healthy as expected. Still, the Macom fallout could be tied to a single issue -- a contract slowdown in China -- rather than any type of worldwide project slowdown...

16. GoDaddy Strategy: GoDaddy has launched premium WordPress support services for small businesses. GoDaddy has worked in and around the WordPress content management ecosystem for several years, so the move isn't surprising. The premium support comes just as GoDaddy exits commodity cloud infrastructure services -- basically stepping away from head-on competition vs. Amazon Web Services.

15. Trump Meets SMB Owners: At a White House event for 100 small business owners Tuesday, President Donald Trump said the United States is in a "golden age" for small business and praised his administration's effort to loosen regulations, UPI reports. The president also said unemployment is at a 16-year low. Although the official unemployment has fallen to 4.4 percent, the U-6 rate, which includes the unemployed "plus all persons marginally attached to the labor force, plus total employed part time for economic reasons, as a percent of the civilian labor force" was at 8.6 percent in June, UPI added.

14. Secure Point of Sale Systems: HP Inc. has unveiled an all-in-one point-of-sale (POS) system, the HP ElitePOS. The company is working with leading retail and hospitality customers and partners to reimagine how technology can transform the in-store experience for customers. It features BIOS-level device security; user authentication technology; and physical security capabilities, HP says.

13. Unified Communications: Digium, which develops unified communications (UC) solutions built on Asterisk open source, has launched four new Switchvox appliances. The effort also includes a streamlined pricing model, and the inclusion of 24x7 US-based technical support for all new on-premise deployments.

12. Big Data Boost: Tableau Software's Q2 results were stronger than expected. The big data and business intelligence software company's subscription services surged more than Wall Street had previously expected, according to financial results released Wednesday.

11. CenturyLink Earnings: CenturyLink's latest quarterly earnings were weaker than expected because of softness in the consumer broadband market. Revenues fell 7 percent and net income fell 91 percent -- though that reflects expenses from the sale of CenturyLink's co-location business. CEO Glen F. Post continues to emphasize CenturyLink's network infrastructure business as a potential growth engine. Oh, and don't overlook CenturyLink's managed security services.

But wait. There's more. Continue to page two for items 10 to 1. We promise: No slideshows await you.

Welcome to page two. Here are items 10 to 1.

10. M&A - Data Centers: Peak 10 Inc. has completed its ViaWest acquisition. Peak 10 now offers colocation, interconnection, cloud, managed solutions and professional services to more than 4,200 customers nationally, the company says.

9. DRaaS: Databarracks has launched Business Continuity as a Service (BCaaS) for small and midsize enterprises (SMEs) in the United Kingdom. We're checking to see if the service leverages a third-party cloud provider and/or third-party software.

8. Cloud Partner Program: Platform9, an open cloud company, has launched the Platform9 Cloud Partner Program. It's designed for VARs to support a "surge in demand for hybrid cloud solutions." Platform9 focuses on open source frameworks like Kubernetes and OpenStack.

7. Azure Partner Momentum: Atmosera, a premier Tier-I Microsoft Cloud Solution Provider (CSP), over the past 12 months has generated a 3X increase in revenue across all Microsoft Cloud services and 11X gain for Managed Azure Services. That sounds impressive -- but actual revenue figures weren't disclosed. Nor were profit figures.

6. IT Services Profits: Cognizant Technology Solutions reported a better-than-expected quarterly profit on Thursday, as the IT services provider benefited from lower income tax compared with the year-ago period, Reuters says.

5. Top Salesforce Integrators: The top system integrators focused on Salesforce SaaS deployments include Accenture, Deloitte, IBM and several other key firms, according to Forrester Research. We'll take a closer look at the list later today...

4. Remote Support: SysAid now offers remote support capabilities powered by TeamViewer. SysAid specializes in help desk and IT service management software. TeamViewer is a remote access tool.

3. Customer Service Platform: GE is spinning out SmartAssist.io, a machine learning customer service platform. GE acquired the technology as part of the Wise.io company purchase last year. SmartAssist's main product helps enterprises manage service requests. Key customers include some key names IT service providers know well -- particularly MailChimp and ZenDesk.

ServiceNow’s Tony Beller
ServiceNow's Tony Beller

2. ServiceNow Partner Initiatives: ServiceNow wants to dramatically expand its partner ecosystem to hit some major financial targets by 2020. Tony Beller, VP of worldwide alliances and channels, is driving the effort. True believers include CDI LLC, a major ServiceNow partner. We've had several interviews with CDI in recent months. And we'll finally (at long last...) share more thoughts soon.

1. Competitiveness Index: Trying to figure out your company's competitive stance relative to rivals and other types of businesses? A new Accenture Competitive Agility Index may assist the effort...

Joe Panettieri

Joe Panettieri is co-founder & editorial director of MSSP Alert and ChannelE2E, the two leading news & analysis sites for managed service providers in the cybersecurity market.