The Future of...

VMware at the Forefront of Innovation at VMworld US 2017

VMworld is VMware’s premier thought leadership and education destination for cloud infrastructure and digital workspace technology professionals. Over the five days of inspiring innovation there were:


  • 20K+ total attendees heard expert insights and gained the tools to enable business success
  • 200+ customer appearances on stage and in breakouts
  • 64K+ Virtual Machines created
  • 1 concert from Blink 182 on Wednesday night

In this blog post, we wanted to share some takeaways on the Day 1 and 2 General Sessions as well as the Emerging Technologies and Future Trends track.

Day 1 and 2 General Sessions:

On the first day, VMware CEO Pat Gelsinger opened VMworld 2017 with a perspective on the impact of technology innovation on business and everyday lives. “Tech is leaving the nest of tech,” he said, “and is now woven into the fabric of our culture.” Pat then laid out VMware’s vision to tackle this App-Driven and Multi-Cloud world:

Complexity is a challenge that VMware is uniquely positioned to address. “Our vision is simple: Empower people to access any app on any device, from any cloud, with intrinsic security architected-in across every layer,” said Pat.

You can read more about VMware’s vision here.

On Day 2 General Session, Pat welcomed Dell Technologies CEO Michael Dell to the stage. Pat and Michael engaged in a great dialogue in response to a series of questions submitted by the VMworld audience that touched on many aspects of VMware’s relationship with Dell Technologies and their plans for the future.

Rob Mee, CEO of Pivotal, and Sam Ramji, VP of Product Management, Developer Platforms at Google, joined them on the main stage to jointly announce VMware Pivotal Container Service™ (PKS), a new product that enables enterprises and service providers to deliver production-ready Kubernetes on VMware vSphere.

You can read the Pivotal announcement here.

Following the announcement, Pat welcomed VMware EVP and Chief Technology Officer Ray O’Farrell to the stage to serve as master of ceremonies for the Mother of All Demos showcasing the strategic breadth and value of the VMware portfolio. The demo used a single storyline of a fictitious pizza company, Elastic Sky Pizza, facing a plethora of business challenges common to many companies when digitally transforming their business operations and IT. You can read more about the products and technologies presented in the demo here. Ray made a powerful statement that “digital transformation is not just about the adoption of new technologies, it’s about transforming how you do business.” But, he acknowledged, “strengthening your business so you can disrupt your competitors can be both difficult and messy. VMware is here to help and to make this easier.” Ray then told the audience that to ease the process of business transformation, companies need a “consistent way to manage their infrastructure and eliminate silos to be successful.” He said that VMware offers the products and services to make this happen and this Day 2 General Session was to demonstrate how all of the products and services work together.

If you missed any of VMworld 2017 US Day 1 & Day 2 General Sessions you can watch the replays on-demand here.

Emerging Technologies and Future Trends track:

VMworld was packed with over 1100+ sessions this year. I would like to focus on the Emerging Technologies and Future Trends track sponsored by VMware Office of the CTO (OCTO). The goal of this track (that included 41 sessions) was to highlight the emerging technologies driving digital transformation, such as the Internet of Things (IoT) and Network Function Virtualization (NFV), that enable our partners and customers to execute their digital business transformation strategies. Customers and partners learned from experts across VMware and members of OCTO, including Ray O’Farrell, EVP and CTO, how VMware is exploring and identifying disruptive technology trends to shape future solutions yet to be built.

One was about Artificial Intelligence at VMware: Using Advanced Analytics as a Digital Transformation Catalyst. This breakout session was featured in TechRepublic. Here’s a snippet of the article:

Artificial intelligence (AI) gets paid a lot of lip service in the enterprise, with IT leaders arguing that every aspect of their stack will be revolutionized by AI. However, the real meaning of AI, and its true impact, can be difficult to measure. At a breakout session during the 2017 VMworld conference, VMware’s Joel Leichnetz and Michael Gandy spoke on what AI is and how it is being used today. The pair started by defining AI, which they said is: “The theory and development of computer systems able to perform tasks that normally require human intelligence…”

One example of the use of Machine Learning at VMware is the newly announced AppDefense that use analytics to auto generate VM manifests. This allows AppDefense to detect a threat once the VM manifest deviates from its intended state.

Another session presented by the Xplorer Group was: Inside the VMware Innovation Engine. This Quick Talk presented a unique chance for VMworld attendees to look behind the VMware innovation curtain and see how VMware thinks and nurtures innovation. The slide below (presented during the talk) describes the VMware Innovation Engine. It is fueled by three main sources: (1) The VMware global R&D teams and the powerful software portfolio it creates brings innovation to accelerate our customers’ digital transformation; (2) Corporate Development expands and enhances VMware’s product lines through strategic acquisitions, partnerships or investments; (3) The Office of the CTO explores and inspires research and innovation throughout VMware with a set of innovative programs.

You can learn more about Innovation at VMware here.

Our next stop: VMworld Europe. Join us in Barcelona, September 11-14, 2017.

Until then, you can follow us on Twitter: @vmocto