June 13, 2022

Article
3 min

Dell’s APEX Brings Infrastructure as a Service to the Data Center

Consumption-based compute and storage deliver cloudlike agility and cost savings.

Michael Peck

Many organizations are electing to get out of the data center business. In general, they’d rather invest their resources in other areas. Or perhaps they prefer to pay only for the compute and storage they need as an operational expense (OPEX) rather than making a massive upfront capital expenditure (CAPEX) for costly IT infrastructure that may go unused. Dell developed Project APEX, an Infrastructure as a Service offering, with this trend in mind.

For decades, organizations have had to deal with CAPEX costs for data center equipment. In recent years, public cloud providers helped shift some of these costs to the OPEX column. Now, organizations are looking for something in the middle: a cloudlike consumption and operational experience for on-premises data center resources. 

Dell aims to deliver this experience with its APEX service. The guiding principle behind APEX is to offer outcomes, not products. We’re not talking about the latest widget or a better mousetrap. We’re talking about delivering — through APEX — the outcomes an organization needs to achieve.

Dell APEX Includes Turnkey and Custom Options

The APEX Console enables users to browse for solutions, outcomes and available technologies, and then order what they need. It’s essentially a one-stop shop that, in the future, will evolve beyond a marketplace to enable enhanced capabilities for monitoring and management resources and solutions. 

Two main pillars comprise the new offering: APEX Cloud Services and custom solutions. All of the APEX technologies are owned and maintained by Dell, but managed by the customer. Depending on the solution, APEX pairs organizations with a customer success manager or a service account manager who ensures they get the experience they’re looking for — whether that’s a subscription-based individual solution or a full managed service offering.

APEX Cloud Services are turnkey technologies, engineered offerings that are available through the APEX Console. Solutions include data storage; block and file storage resources delivered as a service; hybrid cloud backup services; and PowerProtect Cyber Recovery solutions provided through a flexible consumption model. APEX Cloud Services can also provide turnkey private cloud and hybrid cloud solutions, as well as multicloud environments through a hyperconverged infrastructure built on a VMware Cloud operating model and delivered as a service. 

Organizations that want to pay for APEX as an operational expense but need custom solutions may choose APEX Custom Solutions Data Center Utility services. These allow us to take any combination of products and services in Dell’s infrastructure solutions portfolio — compute, storage and backup resources — to package them in a custom format for monthly billing where users are charged only for the resources they consume.

Agility and Cost-Effectiveness for Data Center Priorities

Use cases for APEX align with Dell’s traditional data center functions: artificial intelligence, virtual desktop infrastructure, databases and more. APEX solutions can support any major business technology requirements, with the option of obtaining additional support through Dell or CDW professional services.

Ultimately, usage-based consumption gives organizations the benefits they’ve come to appreciate with other as-a-service models. Instead of buying expensive assets every few years — assets that may ultimately go unused — organizations pay only for what they need to consume at a given time. They’ll also gain a new level of resource elasticity. If the data center needs to expand, organizations can quickly and easily scale up or out — leveraging the agility they need in today’s business environment.

Story by Michael Peck

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