VMware Cross-Cloud: Is it a viable path post Broadcom?

By Published On: October 19, 2023

I wrote back in 2015 that VMware’s future included VMware vSphere, NSX, and VSAN. The company has done exceptionally well in selling the core value of these products. So well that Broadcom agreed to purchase VMware for $69B and extract an additional $3B of shareholder value. That will mean a change in focus for the company’s leadership. One of the areas Broadcom has promised to invest in is VMware’s nascent Cross Cloud product portfolio. Where is the company today in that journey?

Cloud Field Day 18 Presentation

VMware sent representatives from the Tanzu Intelligence product group to present to Cloud Field Day 18 delegates. VMware has been on the Cross Cloud journey for several years now. So, we’ll forgive you if you’ve lost track of the overall vision. Cross cloud is VMware’s preferred term for Hybrid-cloud or Multicloud. The company’s premise is that large enterprises with complex cloud environments need a visionary partner to help make sense of the complexity.

VMware has settled on the Tanzu brand to represent its Cross Cloud portfolio. As an update, VMware helped delegates understand their approach to the application lifecycle. It breaks down into three areas.

  1. Develop – Golden paths to production capture app knowledge and practices
  2. Operate – Deploy, manage and scale apps seamlessly even as underlying infrastructure is updated.
  3. Optimize – Continuously tune cost, performance and security of apps at runtime.

The product teams focused on area 3 of the journey. Tools included Transformer, Guardrails, and Dashboard. Each showed the current capabilities and potential of VMware Tanzu Intelligence, from migrating customers’ existing landscape to compliance and optimization of the Cross Cloud landing zone.

The CTO Advisor’s Take

VMware’s three focus areas align with the challenges faced as enterprises tackle their multicloud challenges. VMware, and therefore Broadcom, has plenty of areas to invest in regarding product maturity and branding. As a portfolio, there’s very little integration between the products presented. For example, Transformer guides an organization through application discovery and modernization. The tool is rudimentary in comparison to VMware Aria Operations Logs. While not possible today, Transformer should be able to pull data from VMware Aria to help customers better understand application dependencies to make better move decisions.

The presentation showed why the industry is frustrated with the existing VMware and why customers I talked to are hopeful that Broadcom will focus the company beyond vSphere, VSAN, and NSX. Due to the strength of these traditional products in the large enterprise, VMware remains in poll position for helping customers along their hybrid-cloud journey. Customers we meet are cautiously optimistic that Broadcom and execute the VMware Cross Cloud promise.

I see a lot of potential in the VMware portfolio.

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