IT and Business Insights for SMB Solution Providers

ICYMI: Our Channel News Roundup for the Week of August 1st

News from the Black Hat security conference, a flurry of impressively consistent Windows 10 adoption stats, and a looming wave of Olympics-related network issues are all among the stories you may have overlooked this week. By Rich Freeman

We’re proud to tell you that we finally managed to write about everything—and I mean everything—that happened in the world of IT this past week. Unfortunately for us, the dog ate most of those stories. Here’s what we would have reported—honest!—if not for that unfortunate mishap.

Black Hat 2016Fear and Launching in Las Vegas. We’ve been so busy lately dumping stories on you about announcements from CompTIA ChannelCon that we said nothing whatsoever about all the news out of this week’s other big event, the Black Hat USA 2016 conference in Las Vegas. Turns out that show was a rich source of both great new reasons to poop your pants and interesting security-related announcements. Here’s just a smattering of the latter:

  • Armor introduced Armor Anywhere, its new threat intelligence and managed security offering for hybrid cloud and on-premises infrastructure.
  • Endace released a new network monitoring and recording system for branch offices that helps administrators and security professionals scrutinize traffic patterns for threats and anomalies.
  • Swiss consulting and managed security firm Kudelski Security reported that it’s now serving customers in the U.S.
  • Malwarebytes revealed that it’s added anti-ransomware capabilities to its endpoint security solution.

Desktop Market ShareSpare us the lies and damn lies talk. Because the statistics about Microsoft's Windows 10 issued in the last few weeks are remarkably consistent. With that system’s one-year birthday now behind us and its first update officially in circulation, numerous folks have been checking up on the latest trends in Windows 10 deployment. Those folks include Spiceworks, which as ChannelPro reported two weeks ago, says that 38 percent of IT organizations have adopted the new OS so far.

But wait, you ask, how does that square with the latest market share numbers from Net Analytics showing that just 21.13 percent of PCs are running Windows 10 at present? Well, it turns out that many of the organizations included in that 38 percent figure are just testing Windows 10 right now. Companies that have actually implemented Windows 10, Spiceworks says, account for 58 percent of the 38 percent or…22.04 percent. And really, what’s 0.91 percent among friends?

Or 4 percent for that matter? According to Spiceworks, 68 percent of organizations will be running Windows 10 a year from now. New research from Adaptiva puts that figure at 64 percent. VMware, meanwhile, plausibly suggests that 75 percent of businesses will have adopted Windows 10 in two years’ time.

Add it all up and it becomes clear that:

1) Windows 10 deployment, while not exactly a tidal wave, has been proceeding at a respectable pace.

2) That pace will accelerate in the next year, and...

3) Market researchers apparently know what they’re doing after all.

HoloLens Development EditionMeanwhile, Microsoft had more to talk about than Windows this week. It also:

  • Opened up the Development Edition of its HoloLens augmented reality system to pretty much anyone in the U.S. and Canada who wants to play around with it.
  • Added a bunch of new security features, including advanced threat detection, a threat detection dashboard, and a tool for spotting potentially vulnerable OS configurations, to its Operations Management Suite for hybrid cloud environments.
  • Extended Azure Rights Management to the Android editions of its Word, Excel, and PowerPoint apps, enabling users of Google’s mobile OS to open and view rights-protected Office files just like owners of Windows, Mac, and iOS devices.

Galaxy Note7Surely, those weren’t this week’s only product launches. No, of course they weren’t, and don’t call me Shirley. In addition to those Microsoft releases…

  • Amazon Web Services released a major new version of its Elastic MapReduce big data service.
  • BIOSTAR announced its new G300 series of high-performance SSDs for gamers, which start at a $44 MSRP for 120 GB of capacity and top out at $140 for 480 GB.
  • Epson introduced a new interface for connecting mobile and cloud-based POS applications to POS printers.
  • Ooma shipped a new hosted small business phone system that runs on iOS and Android smartphones, with no additional hardware required, and costs just $19.95 a month.
  • QNAP unveiled what it claims is North America’s first NAS devices with a USB QuickAccess port that can connect it directly and at high speed to PCs and Macs.
  • Samsung pulled the wraps off the Note7 smartphone (pictured) with a 5.7-inch display, water resistant case, and eyeball-scanning biometric authentication technology.
  • TP-Link launched the IPv6-ready T1700X-16TS Full 10-Gigabit and T1700G-28TQ Gigabit Stackable Smart Switches.
  • VMware rolled out AirWatch Express, a cloud-based, entry-level mobile device management solution designed for fast and easy implementation.
  • Western Digital added a 10 TB model to its WD Gold data center hard drive family.
  • Xirrus delivered its scalable new Xirrus Positioning System, a Wi-Fi location tracking technology for crowded venues like retail stores, hospitals, and sports arenas.

Greg ClarkElsewhere in the realm of vendors. We learned that:

And speaking of strategic. ShoreTel, in a masterpiece of corporate bureaucratese, published a press release this week entitled “Strategic Advisory Committee Formed to Review Strategic Alternatives.” Because, you know, having a strategic advisory committee assess tactical alternatives would be overkill, while using a tactical advisory committee to weigh strategic alternatives would be asking for trouble.

Then again, maybe ShoreTel’s delightfully circular wording was meant to keep its partners from noticing that the strategic alternatives it’s new committee will review include selling the company or spinning off its assets, as well as licensing its technology, entering into new joint ventures and partnerships, and just ignoring all of the above in favor of the same ol’, same ol’.

This week’s stats ticker:

  • Solution providers are in for 6 percent higher revenues and 11 to 20 percent higher profits this year, according to The 2112 Group.
  • California is not among the five states with the most SaaS-related job listings per 100,000 people, according to Better Buys.
  • Dropbox, Facebook, Angry Birds, and Skype are the four apps corporate IT departments blacklist most often, according to MobileIron.
  • Nearly 80 percent of companies have suffered a cyberattack in the last year and more than half experienced a ransomware incident, according to Malwarebytes.

Olympics ViewingThe Olympics of network logjams. The Games of the XXXI Olympiad (aka the 2016 Summer Olympics) get started today in Rio de Janeiro, which means we can all look forward to two weeks of riveting athletic competition—and painfully slow networks.

Indeed, 72 percent of IT professionals expect internet usage at their company to increase during the Rio Olympics, according to recent research from IT staffing firm TEKsystems. Furthermore, since Olympic viewing has caused at least one network problem at 69 percent of organizations in the past, according to a separate study by Riverbed, 70 percent of companies will limit employee access to Olympic content.

Or attempt to, anyway. As previously noted, businesses are also trying to limit access to Dropbox, Facebook, and Angry Birds. And we know how well that’s going.

About the Author

Rich Freeman's picture

Rich Freeman is ChannelPro's Executive Editor

ChannelPro SMB Magazine

Get an edge on the competition

With each issue packed full of powerful news, reviews, analysis, and advice targeting IT channel professionals, ChannelPro-SMB will help you cultivate your SMB customers and run your business more profitably.