AWS re:Invent 2021 Recap: 3 Key Takeaways

Author: Jamie Lee
InterVision Managed Services
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With so many new announcements at 2021’s AWS re:Invent, it is difficult to summarize them all here with justice, so I thought it might be fun to offer a quick recap of my observations at the conference this year. Even in time of pandemic, the full force of AWS was on display at the event, with dazzling exhibits and presentations to excite techies and executives alike. I had incredible conversations with some of the nation’s most innovative technology and business leaders, and I walked away refreshed for what the future holds for business and customer experience.

Here are my three key observations at this year’s conference:

1. NetApp Has Has HasStrengthened Its Alliance with AWS

There are always technology partnership mentions at re:Invent, but this year I found NetApp’s name mentioned and repeated several times. Apart from NetApp being named ISV Design Partner of the Year, I saw sidebars in presentations and announcements such as increased integrations with AWS FSx for ONTAP file service.

This congeniality between two of the largest technology providers in the digital marketplace had me considering a few things, but namely that AWS may be recognizing how essential a role NetApp plays in empowering businesses weighed down with traditional on-prem infrastructure to embrace the cloud more holistically. Hybrid solutions continue to be the norm for most organizations that aren’t born in the cloud as they try to leverage the benefits of the AWS cloud at their own pace. Thus, AWS and NetApp may see value in leaning into their partnership more fully.

How This News Relates to InterVision

We have strong partnership history with NetApp, going back over 25 years. Their deeper alliance with AWS in a slew of new areas only means an expansion of capabilities for our clients, who’ve previously had to map out complexities between NetApp and AWS via our professional or ongoing managed services. Now we can help them further untangle the mess of complexity for an easy-to-adopt suite of solutions between those technologies, to gain efficiencies for other areas of their business.

2. Increased Attention Is on Companies with No Cloud Footprint

Cloud has been around for well over ten years now, yet too many businesses still are not fully utilizing its revolutionary power to transform employee productivity, resiliency against threats of downtime, and cost savings for foundational technology needs. The realities of aging on-prem infrastructure are all too apparent when organizations get stalled on their way to the cloud, either due to unforeseen interdependencies or skills gaps on IT teams. AWS seems to be acknowledging that the pace of cloud adoption hasn’t come as fast as expected, and that some organizations just aren’t ready or wanting to move quickly. As a result, I saw several overtures during presentations and announcements to better encourage increased cloud usage by meeting these organizations where they are, rather than asking these organizations to meet AWS where they want them.

In this vein, I recognized a continuation of some of last year’s conference announcements, iterating existing solutions with an increased precision, all around capturing businesses that are struggling in their journeys to the AWS cloud. I heard it repeated at the conference several times that AWS sees itself as only having 6-10% of the total possible footprint for cloud—which is an astounding notion to think about, especially when considering the predominance that AWS currently has when compared to other hyperscale clouds in the marketplace. With this datapoint in mind, it makes complete sense that AWS would be turning a keen eye on this corner of the market.

How This News Relates to InterVision

InterVision’s roots began over 25 years ago in the datacenter, selling technology hardware to our clients as a VAR. Over the years, we have evolved in tangent with the marketplace to provide professional and managed services in a slew of essential technology areas, such as networking, cloud, disaster recovery, unified communications, and security, to name a few. This evolution makes us a strategic fit for businesses who are struggling with cloud migrations. Because we have been there before in transforming our own business top-to-bottom, we can apply our learned lessons to help transform technology ecosystems for hundreds of clients.

3. The Pace of Innovation Has Accelerated

Now that we have entered another year of a global pandemic, it seems altogether apparent how much our new standard of living has reshaped expectations and thus, innovation. Stories of exceptional cloud migrations and optimizations abounded at re:Invent, and it was heartening to see so many excited people about the possibilities ahead, how the AWS cloud could further reimagine the modern workplace. The sheer amount of announcements that had to do with artificial intelligence and machine learning are just one example of this push for greater innovation at the foundational of new business standards. AWS even announced a scholarship program to help underrepresented and underserved students prep for careers in AI and ML, which to me demonstrated their commitment to bettering the diversity of the technology workplace.

How This News Relates to InterVision

InterVision is extremely well-suited for the rapid pace of innovation, since our core mission as a business is to empower our clients to accomplish their digital objectives, both now and for the future—whatever that might look like. We keep pace with innovation because it’s our mission to do so. Over the years, we have consistently been at the forefront of adopting new technologies to better assist clients in their business objectives, and we look forward to continuing this trend well into the decades to come.

Reach Out to Tell Us Your Thoughts

If you find any of the following topics of interest, I encourage you to visit AWS website to learn more about their re:Invent announcements or strike up a conversation with an InterVision expert here. I’d also personally love to hear from you – connect with me on LinkedIn.

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