What makes a good MSP?
A recent article in Information Age identifies the qualities that customers should look for in a managed services provider and underlines just how close the partnership between customer and supplier can become.
The article highlights the need for MSPs to meet customer expectations in terms of capability and expertise, demonstrate good security and compliance, offer decent SLAs, and clear pricing models. It also suggests that the MSP should work closely with the customer to share experience, contribute to the strategy and direction, and even sit on on key meetings.
You can read the full article here
Microsoft adds Azure options
Microsoft has added a virtual WAN and firewall to its Azure portfolio. It has also announced the availability of Azure Data Box in the UK and Europe. This storage option can be used with partner solutions from Commvault, Veeam and others.
The Virtual WAN provides automated branch-to-branch connectivity by linking up on-premises routers to essentially establish a software-defined WAN. The Azure firewall is a cloud-native network-security service designed to protect virtual network resources on the public cloud platform. Customers can manage access to applications and services using fully-qualified domain names (FQDNs), IP addresses, ports and protocols across virtual networks.
All these solutions and others can be bought through the Microsoft CSP scheme, which you can now access via Synaxon UK.
Epson goes large
Epson has completed construction on a new inkjet printhead factory at its Shiojiri location in Japan – why does that matter to a Synaxon member? Quite simply, because it signals new potential in the commercial and industrial printing markets that Epson is targeting.
The new plant will triple production of Epson’s PrecisionCore chip, which it uses in its high-capacity printers (like the Ecotank), which are selling very well. Epson plans to sell 9.5 million of these devices in FY2018. The chips are also used in digital printers designed to replace the old analogue devices used to print signage, textiles and product labels in commercial and industrial sectors. We will see lots of new releases and a drive for sales in both these areas from Epson, so there should be some good opportunities ahead.
Not feeling well? Set up a confcall!
Last October (2017), the NHS England announced £45 million of funding to support the uptake of online consultations. And there is every reason to imagine that resellers can offer such a solution to their local surgeries and health centres. It’s perfectly feasible and there is already evidence that it works.
A recent case study on www.publictechnology.net highlighted the experiences of Marple Cottage Surgery near Stockport, which has been piloting video consulting since 2016 and finding that it works; 100% of patients found it easy to use and 60% used it while at work. This is one of the major benefits as people don’t have to delay coming in or leave early to attend an appointment. It also saves the doctors a lot of time and enables elderly or immobile patients to be seen more easily.
This is just one of the great opportunities now emerging that involved collaboration, connectivity and other emerging tech’ such as smart home and IoT devices and AI. The world is changing – make sure you don’t get left behind.
You can read the Marple Cottage Surgery case study here.
Creepy or cool?
Some AI-based devices could get the cold shoulder from consumers according to the wonderfully-named ‘Creepy or Cool‘ survey from RichRelevance, a company that specialises in ‘experience personalisation’.
Using fingerprints to buy goods in store for shipment to the home later topped the list and voice-driven technologies and virtual reality were also regarded as being pretty cool.
However, buyers are still sceptical of facial recognition software and the new ‘emotion detection technology’, which adapts to the mood of the individual. Most also don’t like the idea that retailer might know when they have been paid and that voice assistants could be permanently on and potentially, listening in on every conversation.
TOP 5 ‘COOL’ TECHNOLOGIES
- Fingerprint scanning to purchase items and arrange home delivery (50%)
- Using voice-recognition technology to search for products (46%)
- Smartphone apps that show product information, display videos, or flag where desired items are located (41%)
- Virtual reality goggles that simulate store aisles in your own home (41%)
- Digital screens / interactive mirrors / virtual reality glasses in dressing rooms (36%)
TOP FIVE ‘CREEPY’ TECHNOLOGIES
- Emotion detection technology that adapts your shopping experience depending on your mood (58%)
- Facial recognition technology that recognises your preferences (57%)
- Retailers know when you’ve been paid (56%)
- Voice assistants within your home (Amazon Alexa, Google Home) are ‘always on’ and listening, providing product suggestions based on your conversations (56%)
- Targeted ads on your phone based on your proximity to certain shops (46%)
F-Secure moves towards cybersecurity leadership with MWR buy
It did not get much coverage in the UK media but F-Secure recently took a big step towards being a leader the cybersecurity market by acquiring threat-hunting platform provider, MWR Security.
‘Who’, do I hear you ask? Well, MWR is actually one of the industry-leaders in what is still a dark art in security; the company’s Countercept proactive attack detection software is one of the most advanced available and an excellent complement to F-Secure’s own detection and response technologies. It has offices in the UK, the US, South Africa and Singapore and close to 400 staff.
This is another indication of F-Secure’s rise as a leader in the fast-growing cybersecurity space and the company to partner within this area. If you want to know more about partnering with F-Secure, get in touch with the Synaxon team.