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Tech Data Introduces Pre-Assembled, Pre-Validated IoT Solution Offering

The new Analytics and IoT Solution Factory, like the previously introduced Cloud Solution Factory, is designed to help partners capitalize on a rapidly growing next-generation IT market faster, more easily, and with less risk. By Rich Freeman

Tech Data has introduced a collection of pre-assembled, end-to-end Internet of Things solutions in key vertical industries.

The company announced the new offerings in conjunction with the spring meeting of its TechSelect partner community, which is taking place now in San Diego.

Like the Cloud Solution Factory that Tech Data rolled out in February, the Analytics and IoT Solution Factory unveiled today is designed to help partners capitalize on a huge and swiftly growing next-generation IT market more rapidly.

SKUs available through the Factory are based on custom solutions that Tech Data designed, built, tested, and delivered collaboratively with partners in the past.

“If we created this specific solution for one customer to do one thing, the likelihood is that those same components of a solution can be 80 percent repeatable across even more than one vertical,” says Andrea Miner, director of consulting services, analytics, and IoT solutions for North America at Tech Data.

For partners, she continues, selling a proven, pre-validated solution complete with a detailed bill of materials, reference architecture, and sales “battle card” is a faster, simpler way to enter the IoT market, and offers less risk of failure.

“We’ve tested it, and that’s where the heavy lift comes from,” Miner says. Leveraging the Solution Factory also helps partners grow an IoT practice more easily, she adds. “When you talk to your customer about an IoT use case, it’s very specific to that customer, and it’s a customized solution. That’s very difficult to scale.”

According to Miner, partners of any size and all skill levels can benefit from the new resource. “Even if you’re brand new and you have no experience, we have a solution that you can deploy,” she says, noting that more experienced partners with deeper in-house skills can leverage the Solution Factory to establish IoT revenue streams more quickly as well.

“It accelerates their time-to-market even if they could have done it themselves,” Miner says.

Solutions available through the Factory target four vertical industries with especially strong use cases for Internet of Things technology: smart cities, retail, healthcare, and industrial.

Smart city bundles address scenarios like public safety and school security, among others, while retail offerings include wayfinding and location services that use Wi-Fi, beacons, and GPS technology to help shoppers find products. Healthcare solutions include Clinic Interconnect, the solution for medical practices and provider networks that Tech Data and Cisco jointly launched last October.

According to Miner, those and other Factory solutions are comprehensive yet flexible enough to accommodate a partner who prefers Amazon Web Services to Microsoft Azure, for example. “We can swap in a different vendor for something that matches up with their line card,” she says.

Current Solution Factory listings include a wide selection of Intel IoT Market Ready Solutions, pre-packaged hardware/software/support combinations in areas like smart lighting, smart digital signage, and intelligent warehouse management. As ChannelPro reported in January, those offerings are a key part of Intel’s plans for sustaining early momentum in IoT. For Tech Data, they represent an easy way to build out the Solution Factory portfolio.

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