IT and Business Insights for SMB Solution Providers

ICYMI: Our Channel News Roundup for the Week of August 31st

Zippy new laptop chips from Intel, Teams integration from TeamViewer, and a reminder from Oklahoma that wearing clothes when ordering at Taco Bell is a wise idea are just as few of the stories we just barely snuck in before the holiday weekend. By James E. Gaskin

Labor Day, next Monday the 7th, flips the switch from summer to fall. The Rockies are getting a head start on winter with snow predicted for next week. Not much in most places, but still. The weird part (it’s 2020 after all) is that California will see temps above 100 degrees from Palm Springs (118) to Sacramento (109) on Monday as well. Stay safe no matter where you are and catch up on these hot newsbits that slipped by.

ZenBook Flip SBig news from the big names. Thin and light laptop fans are in for some treats as Intel’s 11th Gen Core Processors with Intel Iris X graphics start rolling out in new models. Tagged Intel Evo, the new platform promises 2.7x faster content creation and over a 2x performance boost for gamers. Over 150 hardware designs from the biggest laptop vendors percolate at this moment.

Speaking of new designs, at the Built for Brilliance virtual launch event, ASUS announced a full lineup of new and upgraded PCs built around the Intel 11 Gen Core Processors, including the first ASUS to be Evo certified, the ZenBook Flip S (UX371) (pictured).

MSI debuted its “Business & Productivity” lineup of Summit, Prestige, and Modern Series high-perf laptops. They’re full of Intel 11th Gen Core Processors, and offer 20% faster performance, PCIe 4 SSD, Thunderbolt 4 with USB 4.0, and a new logo.

HP rolled out a full Z suite of hot products that, according to the manufacturer, command a lot of first and most honors:

  • ZCentral—World’s first single-sourced, remote workstation solution
  • ZCentral 4R—World’s most powerful 1U rack workstation
  • Z2 Mini G5—World’s most powerful mini workstation running Adobe Creative Suite
  • Z2 Small Form Factor G5—World’s most powerful SFF desktop workstation
  • Z2 Tower G5—World’s most expandable entry workstation
  • ZBook Fury 15 G7—World’s most expandable 15-inch mobile workstation
  • ZBook Fury 17 G7—World’s smallest 17-inch mobile workstation with RTX 5000
  • ZBook Power G7—HP’s most affordable mobile workstation

Security news. Hello to the new Proofpoint Essentials Security Awareness solution, which is designed to help SMBs identity top risks. Part of the streamlined Proofpoint Essentials platform for email security.

Speaking of Proofpoint…You don’t need a DJ for this new mashup: Proofpoint’s Targeted Attack Protection and CyberArk’s Privileged Access Security Solution helps IT protect their Very Attacked People (VAP). Extra security policies better protect high-risk users and help remediate phishing attempts.

Netskope rolled out its Cloud Threat Exchange to gather, curate, and share threat intelligence in real time across businesses. Any certified partner, customer, or vendor may use this to automate threat information gathering.

iProov launched what they say is the world’s first global threat intelligence system for biometric assurance. The iProov Security Operations Centre (iSOC) combines tech, process, and the people needed to monitor and manage the landscape of biometric cybercrime, including deepfakes.

The Secureworks Global Partner Program now includes Arrow Electronics as a distribution partner.

ServiceNow Contact Tracing appOther product news. TeamViewer gets kudos for their free remote connection software, a product area that’s become seriously hot with the expansion in work-from-home employees. Now you can launch the TeamViewer Remote and AR tools from within Microsoft Teams.

Speaking of work-from-home employees…Remote workers and security issues make admins reach for Tums all too often. Perhaps the new ManageEngine ADSelfService Plus that supports multi-factor authentication (MFA) for VPNs will cut down your need for chalky snacks.

You knew something was brewing when carrier-class telephony provider NetFortris acquired Fonality in 2017. Here it is: NetFortris Comm-unity, an enterprise-class managed unified communications product.

5G may be new but Wi-Fi 5 is so last year. Hello to the NETGEAR Orbi Pro WiFi 6 Tri-band Mesh System. Includes 4x more device capacity and supports up to six satellites to cover 18,000 square feet. How to best link those satellites, aka access points? How about one of the four new NETGEAR Gigabit Unmanaged PoE Switches. Your choice of the GS516PP, GS524PP, GS516UP, and GS524UP.

ServiceNow customers can now import device (and by implication, user) location data from Cisco DNA Spaces into the ServiceNow Contact Tracing app (pictured). And while they’re at it, they can shop for Mimecast applications inside the ServiceNow Store as well.

Toshiba revved up its line of Canvio Portable Storage devices. Canvio Flex models use USB-C and Canvio Gaming models are designed for gamer PCs and consoles. PC/Mac/iPad support with up to 4TB capacity.

Gray hairs call them printers, but flat-bellies call them workflow and process automation endpoints. The Ricoh Intelligent Business Platform uses modern AI tools and low-code applications to let you develop highly flexible workflows.

With fanfare and flourish, DH2i rolled out its DxEnterprise support for Microsoft Azure shared disks and Azure Disk Storage enhancements. Your SQL Server that must be highly available can now be moved to Azure in just minutes.

Dana LiedholmNon-product vendor news. BLOKWORX rolled out the red carpet to welcome Dana Liedholm (pictured) as its new vice president of sales and marketing.

And a double red carpet in front of Malwarebytes to greet Kelly Hall, vice president of customer success and Jennifer Mullin, vice president of product marketing and customer insights.

The Welcome Wagon now zooms over to Agiloft to greet Kevin Niblock, the new chief revenue officer.

Few companies have been doing business communications as long as Mitel. You can now get Mitel MiCloud Connect from SYNNEX.

With the acquisition of Binary Tree, Quest Software’s Microsoft Platform Management suite leaped forward in migration support and modernization services.

This week’s stats ticker:

IDC’s Worldwide Mobile Device Trackers report predicts a 3.3% increase in sales of personal PCs, workstations, and tablet growth this year, largely driven by the new world of work and school from home. Volume in 2020 should reach 425.7 million units. But the rush by schools to snap up every laptop they could find means next year will see a decline in total sales. Future budgets were pulled forward into 2020 and the market will pay the price in 2021 and 2022. Expect the education market to decline by double digits. The only product line to increase in the 2020-2024 timeframe? Workstations, expected to be up 8.9%

The Enterprise Mobility: Deployment Strategies program from IDC looked at mobile worker trends through 2024. By that time, after four years of steady growth, mobile workers will make up nearly 60% of the U.S. workforce. There are two core categories: information mobile workers and frontline mobile workers. The information worker typically works from a single location, like a home office, and has dedicated computing resources. Some are mobile daily, and some occasionally. The frontline mobile worker includes nurses, construction workers, store associates, and field services personnel, among others. Currently, frontline workers make up about 57% of the U.S. worker population, but in 2020, only 49% of those workers are enabled with mobile devices. That compares to 55% of information workers. 90% of businesses think it’s likely more of their workers will work from home in the future.

The annual State of Wireless WAN Report from IDG confirms that the era of the wireless WAN has arrived. Not only arrived, but it is the critical infrastructure in driving innovation, including business recovery. Part of this all-in excitement can be traced to the confidence in 5G with increasing adoption planned for the coming year. That doesn’t mean that LTE is withering away though. 49% of respondents to a wireless WAN survey chose LTE for the bandwidth and fiber-fast speeds along with rapid deployment capabilities. But that’s far behind the 67% who are confident or very confident 5G will deliver business benefits within the next year. 82% expect 5G to deliver increased WAN speeds in the next year, and 66% believe it will provide improved reliability.

Taco BellTaco Buff. Oklahoma’s nickname is the Sooner State. And 61-year-old Christopher Sale would sooner get a taco than wait for his clothes to get washed and dried. That’s how he got caught in the drive through, waiting for his burrito while in the buff. Yep, driving naked to Taco Bell.

He not only went through the line once, but twice. He came back asking for additional sauce packets and napkins. And an extra taco.

Saturday nights around 9 p.m. may be a good time to get naked or get tacos, but not both. Mr. Sale was surprised to learn it’s illegal to drive naked in Oklahoma. Even when that taco craving hits really, really hard.

About the Author

James E. Gaskin's picture

JAMES E. GASKIN is a ChannelPro contributing editor and former reseller based in Dallas.

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