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CEO Sees "Dawn Of Hardware As A Service"

This year will see the “dawn of hardware as a service,” a potentially disruptive trend that will shift power to solution providers that can deliver software, hardware and services in a utility computing model, N-able Technologies CEO Mark Scott said Friday at the company’s partner conference.

Initially, the trend will involve the use of leasing arrangements, but new and innovative hardware vendors also could emerge to support the model, Scott told about 250 partners and prospects at a regional partner conference in Santa Ana, Calif., the first of several such events that the MSP vendor plans to hold nationwide. “The hardware-as-a-service vendors will provide that through the channel,” Scott said.

N-able is driving the hardware-as-a-service theme home to its channel partners primarily because it sees the trend as a missing piece for expanding the MSP market and moving it toward a true utility computing model, according to Scott.

“As we bring together software as a service, managed services and hardware as a service, we’re getting to the fruition of utility IT,” he said.

The Y2K-like frenzy around managed services that emerged in the channel last year created some confusion, with many IT services companies claiming to provide managed services, Scott said. But MSPs that bundle hardware into their fixed-fee services would begin to differentiate themselves from those that haven’t made that shift yet, he noted.

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