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Product releases have Microsoft getting busy with resellers

Product releases have Microsoft getting busy with resellers

After orientating distributors, a focus on resellers in November

Resellers feeling a little vague on specifics around Microsoft’s new products will get a chance to hear all about it in November.

The company is launching on a marketing campaign starting today, with the New Zealand release of Windows 8.

The effort will be followed up by events throughout New Zealand targeted at resellers with updates on Microsoft’s new operating system and its features, with Ingram Micro running a similar road show for its resellers in eight regional locations.

“We want resellers to understand the business value because the coverage up until now has been about the apps and the cloud, and the start screen,” says Warwick Grey, Microsoft’s account manager for distribution. “I want to tell them: Yes, it looks different but there are many improvements in general that haven’t been brought up that would indicate multiple value around the business side of things.”

Microsoft has prepared for the rollout campaign with training sessions for distribution partners, Ingram Micro and Express Data, because “upskilling the channel starts with the distributors” Grey says.

One of the biggest shifts for Microsoft with Windows 8 is that a full, out of the box version will not be sold via retail, but as upgrades only. The company, instead is freeing up the product for OEMs in custom builds, and resellers can “source the OEM product” to “PC enthusiasts or those that want to build systems from scratch.”

Key points of interest for Microsoft resellers will be in Windows 8 Enterprise — one of its three flavours — which includes application-level security, automatic and secure VPN-enabled connections, and group policy enforcement, as well as RemoteFX virtualisation capabilities for VDI deployment.

Grey says the prospect of Windows 8 devices offering “business tablets that an IT manager can love” with enhanced security through BitLocker is also part of the messaging.

Microsoft is running its reseller summit in a tour of the three major centres, and will be laying on all-day events intended to provide a more comprehensive view of product features in Windows 8, Office 2013 and the new Windows Server, as well as Windows Phone, and how resellers can position the products for customers.

These will be held in Wellington on November 13, followed by Auckland on November 21, and Christchurch on November 23. Ingram Micro will be offering eight regional roadshows, beginning in New Plymouth on November 5, and including Palmerston North, Napier, Tauranga, Nelson, Hamilton, Whangerei, and ending in Dunedin on November 29.

Click here to register for the Microsoft-run events in the three major cities.


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