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HP is taking the concept behind its Converged Infrastructure strategy of pre-integrated, pre-tested solutions designed for the enterprise and data center to small and midsized businesses at a price point designed for them.

The technology giant has announced new communication, collaboration and networking solutions for small business and midsized business, as well as new storage solutions and online services.

The technology is designed to bring small and midsized businesses the functionality they want and price points they can afford and delivered in the pre-integrated, pre-tested way that characterizes HP’s Converged Infrastructure.

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“SMBs last year and this year were looking for business protection solutions, collaboration solutions and consolidation solutions, which is quite new for the midmarket,” Lisa Wolfe, worldwide SMB marketing and strategy leader for HP Enterprise Business, tells Channel Insider.

To fulfill that need, HP and Microsoft together are offering a unified collaboration solution built on HP’s Converged Infrastructure and designed to help SMBs improve employee productivity at a time when so many businesses have cut back on their workforces but are responding to a marketplace that is starting to revive.

New HP offerings include:

  • The HP and Microsoft Unified Communication and Collaboration solution – designed to increase business productivity while reducing collaboration costs. The solution combines servers, storage, networking and software to streamline operations across messaging, video and voice applications.
  • HP Virtual Rooms – created to simplify remote collaboration by offering an easy-to-use interactive workplace. The software application enables people both inside and outside the business to connect via a virtual online location, and is priced on a monthly basis.
  • HP 48Upper – A cloud-based on-demand secure service that IT pros manage what they need to manage — from project planning and operations to service management. HP says that built-in community features also make it easier to share best practices across an organization.

On the product side, HP’s Converged Infrastructure solutions for SMBs include:

  • The HP V1410 Switch. HP says this simplifies how networks are built, managed and deployed, while providing up to a 451 percent return on investment. It offers eight-, 16- and 24-port gigabit options and delivers reliable "plug and play" connectivity among client PCs, servers and storage devices. The HP V1410 switch is part of HP’s recently expanded V-series portfolio, which now delivers complete wired and wireless networking solutions for SMBs.
  • The HP StorageWorks X310 Data Vault improves productivity with local and remote file access for up to 10 PC clients in addition to Macs. HP says the solution is cost effective and provides easy-to-use deduplication and backup.
  • The HP StorageWorks X1000 Network Storage System improves storage capacity utilization by providing up to twice the drives of previous generations in half the space — all at a 44 percent lower price, according to HP.
  • The HP StorageWorks P2000 G3 SAS Modular Array (MSA) delivers increased performance and double the capacity of the previous generation. It features the latest 6Gb Serial Attached SCSI (SAS) technology to provide shared storage consolidation without the additional networking cost or expertise traditionally required to run a storage area network (SAN).

HP’s effort to fill out its product line is one that should resonate with small and midsized business customers, according to Romi Randhawa, president and CEO of HPM Networks, an HP channel partner.

“HP was getting killed on iSCSI a few years ago,” he tells Channel Insider. “We partnered with EqualLogic, but then Dell acquired them. We kept telling HP that we needed an iSCSI solution that is not as expensive as fiber because they had nothing for the middle. Our story was heard and HP ended up buying LeftHand Networks.”

Randhawa serves on HP’s SMB Channel Advisory Council. He says that since HP bought LeftHand his company has done $3.8 million in storage sales so far in 2010 compared to $3.6 million for all of 2009.