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Facts and figures behind HPE’s Leader Ranking in Gartner’s Magic Quadrant for Integrated Systems

Chris Purcell


Gartner just released its first ever Critical Capabilities for Integrated Systems research report, which gives a detailed look at the data behind its recent Magic Quadrant for Integrated Systems rankings.  As I mentioned in my previous blog on this topic, HPE has advanced each year and now occupies a top spot in the Leaders leader.pngQuadrant, demonstrating dominance in both their ability to execute and completeness in vision.

It’s interesting to analyze the Critical Capabilities report, because it provides valuable insights into why Gartner ranked each company where they did within the Magic Quadrant. This has been a gap in the past as there has not been any placement detail, which has left some ambiguity and customer questions.

Before we delve into the specifics, I’d like to give a bit of background on this report. First, Gartner focuses on 15 critical capabilities for a class of products – weighted in terms of how important that capability is for a particular use case. Next, each vendor’s products and services are rated in regards to how well they achieve each capability--on a scale of one to five.

The top four vendors in the Gartner Magic Quadrant for Integrated Systems all achieved a score above 4 (out of a possible 5) in each of the four use cases.  A score of 4 means that the vendor meets or exceeds requirements of each section.

The fifteen critical capabilities included the following: product viability, hardware, baseline criteria, hypervisors, containers, data services, software-defined infrastructure, stack integration, management, vertical scaling, horizontal scaling, data protection, software-defined data center, security, service and support.

The four use cases were as follows:

  • Infrastructure modernization
  • Infrastructure consolidation
  • Infrastructure agility
  • Points projects.

HPE’s ranking—at or near the highest levels in all four use case categories

The Critical Capabilities for Integrated Systems report shows us why HPE moved to the top of Magic Quadrant rankings. Out of a total of 19 vendors, HPE scored at or near the highest levels in each of the four use cases Gartner identified for this market.

Here is a summary of my observations.

Infrastructure Consolidation

This use case focuses on costs--from utilization savings and cost optimization to total cost of ownership and return on investment. In today’s cost-conscious, highly competitive environment, increased utilization savings is a big deal.

I started with this use case because HPE scored at the very top with a 4.11. This is because HPE offers a wide range of fully converged systems that target a myriad of workloads--from private cloud and VDI to do-it-yourself (DIY) solutions, verified and tested reference architectures and configurations along with a wide array of data center transformation and consolidation services. Partner delivered systems also give customers added value and services with the assurance that the systems will work as promised due to the expertise and close partnerships that HPE has maintained over the years.

Infrastructure Agility

Gartner also identifies infrastructure agility as another use case. This one is geared more toward what Gartner calls Mode 2 infrastructures: development environments that value the IT agility users would want using containers, virtualization and cloud portability. HPE scored 2nd in this use case with a 4.15.

This is a powerhouse HPE category made up of strong industry partnership with the HPE OneView Partner Ecosystem--which increases IT productivity with a Composable Infrastructure API. Partnerships in this area include Docker and Mesosphere collaborations, which create distributed applications that are portable across any infrastructure. Additionally, Mesosphere provides a datacenter-scale operating system that enables distributed systems to be as simple as using a single computer.

HPE also supports this use case with a wide variety of consulting services:

  • Converged Management/OneView Consulting
  • Software-defined, Composable Infrastructure Consulting
  • HPE Datacenter Care
  • Flexible Capacity
  • DC Infrastructure Automation
  • Operational Support Services

Point Projects

Another use case is what Gartner calls point projects, which they explain is more than just clumping all other workloads together. These use cases include compute and VM single-function appliances that share common management, demographics and packaging.

HPE was 2nd in this use case with a score of 4.15. The use case includes the delivery of HPE’s next generation software-defined infrastructure with multi-cloud capability and security. HPE ranked at the top in this area due to their strength delivering the following HPE solutions:

  • HPE Moonshot, which is an energy-efficient, integrated server system
  • HPE Apollo 8000 System that advances the science of supercomputing
  • HPE NonStop solutions that provide the highest x86 availability for the most-stringent SLAs
  • HPE SAP HANA, which lead the industry with workload-optimized systems designed for speed, flexibility, and unmatched scalability

Infrastructure Modernization

According to Gartner, this category represents customers who are trying to modernize their new or existing infrastructure. This refresh could include simplifying their portfolio or updating management or deployment capabilities.

HPE ranked fourth in this category with a score of 4.09 and only a fraction below the leader. Of the four use case results, I would like to push back a bit with this ranking. Although scoring a 4.09 is excellent, I would argue that with HPE’s introduction of Synergy, they deserved an even higher score.

Through Synergy, HPE has demonstrated their expertise at delivering composable infrastructure. And as noted in the report, HPE is working to bridge its other converged systems to composable by using HPE OneView, an infrastructure automation engine that integrates all systems.  HPE OneView is deployed in data centers throughout the world, providing HPE a means to deliver top-tier infrastructure modernization.

HPE tops the list

HPE should be very happy with their rankings in this report. They’ve worked hard--broadening their portfolio of integrated systems and reference architectures and strengthening their channel partner relationships to target nearly all use cases and workloads. And unlike many vendors, HPE can offer convergence to the cloud (on-premises and public) with single contract support and accountability, factory integration, and pay-per-use options. HPE has a strong GTM potential with the new Synergy line, and HPE OneView is a key differentiator.

Big picture, what does all of this mean in terms of where the industry is headed? As I read through all of this information, I’m again reminded that this market is still maturing; as it evolves, the industry will continue to see many changes. The gains some of the earlier leaders have attained have eroded, and HPE’s top ranking demonstrates that they are moving in the right direction. And with HPE’s increased efforts to carry composable qualities across their diverse portfolio, I believe HPE will continue to pull even further out in front.

Interested in in more information? Read the full Magic Quadrant for Integrated Systems report from Gartner. Find out more about HPE Integrated Systems portfolio.


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About the Author

Chris Purcell

Composable Infrastructure, Integrated and Multi-Cloud management, Hyperconverged Infrastructure and Cloud