November 03, 2022

Article
3 min

Free Power Protection Hardware in Your Future? Software Can Make this a Reality

The industry has made a habit of giving away software to enable hardware sales. But don’t be surprised if we see the market turned upside down in the future – with companies giving away commoditized pieces of hardware in order to sell software.

CDW Expert

Two People standing in a centre in a data centre looking at a laptop and smiling.

For years, our partners at Eaton have taken a unique approach to selling power protection; while other vendors focused on hardware, they’ve been committed to leading with software. In fact, the industry as a whole has made a habit of giving away software to enable hardware sales. But don’t be surprised if we see the market turned upside down in the not-too-distant future – with companies giving away commoditized pieces of hardware in order to sell software.

Software: the true value

Eaton has long recognized that software represents the true value for customers. From the integration of Eaton solutions with leading IT platforms to their obsession with cybersecurity, they’ve always known that an IT-savvy audience cares very little about what’s inside the box (be it a UPS or a PDU). Rather, they’re concerned with how their solutions seamlessly incorporate into their IT infrastructure to deliver tangible business outcomes.

For instance, Eaton has long highlighted the unique connectors of their IPM disaster avoidance platform with leading virtualization and hyperconverged infrastructure systems, including VMware vSphere/vCenter/vSAN, Dell VxRail and others. While IPM offers a perfect solution for remote sites such as branch offices and edge computing settings, other environments may require more extensive management capabilities to monitor and supervise power assets located on premises, at the edge or in the cloud.

VPM and Brightlayer: versatility and innovation

Because of that, Eaton has shifted their focus to the innovative VPM platform. Capable of scaling to cover thousands of devices, VPM is ideal for a wide variety of applications, from data centre operators managing rack PDUs to retail chains overseeing potentially hundreds, or thousands, of remote stores. Because the software is concentrated solely on remote management of power assets, it is much easier and faster to deploy, requiring very little training and accelerating time-to-revenue compared to more conventional DCIM solutions.

Yet for customers who wish to add more capabilities to their existing monitoring infrastructure, Eaton also provides a migration path to a full DCIM software capability through their Brightlayer Data Center suite. This critical concept of platforming is at the heart of Brightlayer, which will see more functionality added in the near future. One such addition will be Electrical Power Management System (EPMS), providing facility managers who want to monitor their data centre electrical supply with fine-grained precision and predictive insights that enable them to better anticipate maintenance needs and reduce the potential cost of downtime. Furthermore, the automated actions and integrations with virtualization systems of IPM will be transferred to the new Brightlayer DC platform, providing a broad array of capabilities to manage modern hybrid IT systems while closing the bridge between facilities and IT.

Eaton has always been at the forefront of providing solutions with maximum value, evident in their long-standing focus on software.