What do David Blaine, blade servers, a BMW i8, and 3D printers all have in common? Dell EMC World. We are now a week removed from what was only the second time this historic PC company and their recently acquired server company have shown up together to bring the latest innovations in data center technologies to IT professionals from around the world. I could spend the entirety of this blog telling you all about the environment that brought 13,000 technology folks to Las Vegas, but I will pivot to the point of our attendance which was the Solutions Expo. If you didn’t have a chance to attend, let me take a moment to paint the picture.
I didn’t so much as make it to baggage claim before the Dell EMC World signage began (see below). The airport digital signage, taxi podiums, even the parking garage was wrapped in banners about the event.
Make my way to the event which was held at the Sands Expo Center where you head up a set of escalators (also signed) to a massive registration area where a DJ was pumping a great mix of 80s pop and current R&B. I gather my badge equipped with RFID containing info about who I am and what access I am allowed, and I head over to set-up. Before I am allowed on the show floor, I am stopped by 2 different security guards which set the tone for the event – you were not going to slip past these guys, don’t even bother trying. Upon entering the expo, you quickly realize that this is not the quaint Dell World that used to be hosted in Austin, Texas. There are massive digital screens, executive stages, a tech lounge equipped with over 100 desktop computers, and, the most impressive piece, the digital tunnel you walk through as you make your way to the true expo show floor. Nearly 20 yards long and 15 feet high, the feeling you had walking through this massive tunnel with the Realize-themed honeycomb digital imagery plastered from floor to overhead was nothing short of that feeling I imagine the New England Patriots feel as they storm the field at Gillette Stadium – the digital transformation has begun and Dell EMC wanted to make sure you knew it.
From Dell partners like WWT and SHI to Dell vendor partners like Brocade and Microsoft, there was no shortage of information and new technologies. The expo was open for 3 days which barely allowed for an attendee to make it to all 100+ vendor booths and attend all the breakouts they desired. We were positioned directly across from Dell Global Services, in a 20x20 space and we brought our A-game. Displaying everything from a collaboration table to Ortronics LX cabinets which seemingly got as much play on their white color as they did on their tool-less functionality and additional built-in features. I was equally as impressed with the engagement from the attendees as I was with the show set-up. We had great conversation with Data Center managers around their needs, pain points, and affinity for Dell EMC products and it gave us an opportunity to learn and understand how we might better position ourselves or tout the innovation built into every Legrand product. They say what happens in Vegas, stays in Vegas…I just couldn’t help but share my perspective on what was one of the most epic shows I have ever seen in my 7 years in the IT channel.