Evaluator Group attended Commvault’s third annual customer event October 9-11, in Nashville Tennessee. Over 2,000 attendees had access to 150 presentations from Commvault employees, customers, solution and channel partners and industry experts. The top Commvault GO 2018 themes and key takeaways from the event are summarized in this Industry Snapshot.
Commvault continues its evolution from a Data Protection company to a Data Management company which was a theme at last year’s GO conference. The objective remains to help customers determine what data they have and where it is, insights into the value of that data and actionable management to get the most out of it. The Virtual Data Repository is at the core of the Commvault architecture. Presentations focused on enhancements to the Virtual Data Repository including the dynamic 4D Index for richer indexing, integrated AI and ML for advanced insights and automation, and an automated policy engine for smarter operations.
Commvault and several partners used Commvault GO to make various product announcements. Some of the significant announcements include:
Commvault recognized more than a year ago that after more than 20 years developing technical solutions, they needed to simplify their products and their business operations to meet the evolving needs of customers and partners. The company started with a consolidated, simplified product structure (now just four products) and straight forward pricing and licensing which was announced in July. Each of the product announcements mentioned above had a simplification angle from the new and modern user interface similar to IT virtualization tools, to additional HyperScale appliance models to appeal to more customers who want the simplified deployment method of an integrated appliance, to a suite of as-a-Service offering for customers who want to purchase data protection simply as an outcome.
Another theme throughout the event was a renewed focus on technology and channel partners. Company executives discussed having more visible partnerships with system vendors, cloud providers, managed service providers as well as driving more business through their channel partners. In one year, Commvault has flipped the percentage of direct versus channel from 65/35 to 35/65. The inclusion of this ecosystem of partners was present throughout the exhibit floor with a focus on solution areas where a desired outcome (such as backup) would include Commvault exhibits plus partner exhibits around that outcome (such as backup hardware or backup as a service).
To meet the needs of IT organizations and partners that what to acquire Backup and Recovery as service, Commvault their Commvault Complete Backup and Recovery as-a-Service (B&RaaS) portfolio. The portfolio adds to the previously released Commvault Endpoint Data Protection as-a-Service offering with Commvault Complete B&RaaS, B&RaaS for VMs and B&RaaS for Native Cloud applications like Salesforce and Office 365. These services will be available through the AWS, Azure and Commvault Marketplaces by December 2018. Commvault Partners will also offer these services, typically with additional support and customization capabilities.
Commvault is well positioned to help their customers better know and manage their data, with an established ecosystem of products and partners to achieve their goals. Much of the current and future capabilities depend on the core functionality of Commvault’s Data Platform and Evaluator Group is encouraged to see continued evolution of its architecture and execution of their roadmap. Increasingly, this evolution will leverage AI and ML techniques and tools as a foundation for automation and data management.
Event attendees seemed satisfied with their Commvault solutions both from the use cases presented and through informal conversations with Evaluator Group during the event. Most of the presentations and conversations are focused on backup and recovery use cases and successes since many of the data management capabilities are still new though many customers are interested in data management capabilities and direction.
The ability for Commvault Activate to index data in place across a variety of sources and locations has the potential to be a differentiator for Commvault. It is available as a standalone application and will help customers get to know their data without first having to do a backup with Commvault Complete. Commvault plans to announce additional applications built on the capability on a quarterly basis.
Commvault’s HyperScale technology and HyperScale appliances were launched at last year’s GO conference and it appears that momentum is building. Multiple presentations about various HyperScale capabilities and solutions from partners (including Cisco and HPE) were well attended and Evaluator Group participated in several discussions where Commvault customers were planning HyperScale deployments in the near future. We continue to see growing interest from customers in the scale-out, integrated data protection solutions in the market.