With the world’s #1 PC maker HP now in full transition mode, now may be the time for Dell to get its full come-uppance. On the enterprise side, it’s had two big aces in the hole for a few years now: One is Optimized Deployment, which borrows Microsoft’s data imaging technology to enable admins to rapidly deploy fully-configured Windows operating systems and applications to multiple clients in minutes. A 2010 study (PDF available here) showed automated image-based deployment could save businesses up to $337 per PC, in IT management costs alone.
Another is Dell’s extraordinary KACE management appliances – literally plug-and-play tools that perform inventory analysis on corporate networks. A KACE tool lets admins deploy applications, patches, and updates to designated systems in the network.
You’d think it would only be a matter of time before someone at Dell put two and two together. This morning, Dell announced it’s enabling its Optimized Deployment service to team up with its KACE appliance to deploy fully pre-configured Windows on selected clients.
This Dell video describing how the KACE K1000 deployment appliance works, comes with a somewhat familiar voice.
Now, the company says, the Dell service will also make it possible to deploy Dell clients in a network, and using the image migration service, automatically transition retiring HP, Lenovo, or Acer systems to those Dell clients.
As if to rub some salt in the wound, Dell’s announcement today came bundled with the results of a survey of some 130 HP customers of 500 employees or more, commissioned by Dell. Amid all the chaos surrounding HP’s executive shifts and realignment investigations, some 46% of respondents to the Dell survey said they were less likely to purchase HP products now than before. Some 47% of HP PC users in enterprises and 23% of users in companies with HP servers told the survey they were considering alternatives to HP. One wonders how much higher those numbers would have been after today’s announcements.