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Wan Optimisation Goes Free

01 Oct 2011

Silver Peak is hoping its newly launched, free, fully-functional virtual Wan optimisation appliance will lure a larger chunk of the market over to its other Wan optimisation offerings, while providing resellers with with a way of exposing customers to the technologies in a ‘non-threatening’ way – and ultimately providing upselling opportunities.

"This is a great way for resellers to be able to enhance the other services they are delivering to their customers,” says Wayne Neich, Silver Peak APAC general manager. "They can see a customer has a problem with data being delivered or the performance of a link, and can quickly respond for the customer.”

Neich says partners are free to charge customers for their services, even though there is no charge for VX-Xpress itself.

VX-Xpress, which can be downloaded from Silver Peak’s website, is only available in one model which supports up to 4Mbps speeds, and only supports point to point connections. The offering also uses a community-based support model, with Silver Peak not providing service and support for it, and it is not manageable by the company’s global management system.

"We’re hoping that when they need to go to point C, as opposed to just between point A and B, or above 4Mbps, they’ll look favourably to purchase Silver Peak’s VX edition,” Neich says of the longer term game plan in releasing the free Xpress. "We’re hoping that [VX-Xpress] is enough of the drug to get them hooked, and for anything above it, they will have to buy.”

Game Changing

Neich says VX-Xpress ‘will attract attention to Silver Peak from a much larger part of the market’ and says the freebie is part of an effort by the company to ‘change the game in Wan optimisation’.

Part two of that plan came with the launch of expanded capabilities for the VRX-8, a gigabit virtual Wan optimisation solution which Neich says will appeal to the top 100 companies in New Zealand.

"ASPs and service providers will be supplying to those companies or wanting to use it internally, while the bigger channel partners will be wanting to offer to their top end customers.”

The VRX-8 now supports up to 256,000 simultaneous user sessions and runs on most common hypervisor platforms.

Priced at US$69,995 for a perpetual license, Neich says the offering has cost benefits over other products on the market. "VRX-8 is a high-end gigabit platform, which is just pieces of software which can be run on a server with VMware, rather than being a hardware appliance which can cost US$200,000. This can run on an IBM or HP server, for example. So we’re whipping the price point down to a third.

"Will it hurt other big players in the market? We certainly think so.”

Neich says channel partners have already expressed interest in the product. "If they are in a high-end Wan optimisation deal and they are not using Silver Peak they are going to be way off the ball park and very uncompetitive on price,” he claims.

The company had a conditional purchase – prior to the launch of the product – for a New Zealand company that Neich would only say was ‘a worldwide leader in retailing a product we all use every week’. "The channel partner is a kiwi company, and the deal has global ramifications because it’s not just New Zealand, but also several islands, and not just the Pacific, but one in the Caribbean. It’s not a huge deal but it’s quite profound.”. 

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