HP and Intel have formed an alliance around high-performance computing, the companies announced today at the International Supercomputing Conference in Frankfurt. The partnership is in a bid to capture a growing commercial enterprise market for HPC.
In addition to advancing HPC offerings, the alliance is about forming a go-to-market strategy to deliver purpose-built compute platforms to enterprises across various industries. The companies see HPC needs expanding beyond traditional use cases in academia and government to commercial enterprises and will work to develop vertical-specific HPC solutions.
The companies will launch a new HPC Center of Excellence in Texas as well as enhance an existing one in France with tighter go-to-market collaboration. The centers are designed to bring experts from both companies together to support customers throughout planning, developing, deploying, and managing HPC solutions. The alliance also means tighter combination of technologies from both technology giants.
HPC is traditionally the territory of government and academia but has been increasingly expanding into enterprises seeking business insight from Big Data analytics. IDC forecasts the base HPC compute server market will reach $15.2 billion in 2019 on the heels of advanced analytics.
The companies see a perfect storm for HPC. The sheer amount of data is increasing, as is the sources generating data from the Internet of Things and an increasingly connected world. Business processes are undergoing a transformation to increasingly real-time needs across all industries. Finally, the companies believe that processing technology has hit a price point that aligns with traditional general-purpose IT, making HPC the realm of everyone, not just traditional academia and government use.
As a result of the alliance, HP is offering HPC Solutions Framework based on HP Apollo servers, which integrates Intel’s Xeon processors and HPC scalable system framework. Purpose-built HP Apollo Compute platforms will be tailored for a wide range of workload-optimized solutions and unique customer requirements.
“As data explodes in volume, velocity and variety, and the processing requirements to address business challenges become more sophisticated, the line between traditional and high-performance computing is blurring,” said Bill Mannel, vice president and general manager, HPC and Big Data, HP Servers, in a release. “With this alliance, we are giving customers access to the technologies and solutions as well as the intellectual property, portfolio services and engineering support needed to evolve their compute infrastructure to capitalize on a data-driven environment.”
In terms of competition, IBM, NVIDIA, Google, and others behind the OpenPOWER initiative have been making similar moves. The POWER architecture is being positioned for HPC needs and against Intel. IBM has opened a few HPC centers itself in Europe, recently in France as well as a big deal with the UK government.
HP and Intel are enhancing capabilities at the HPC Center of Excellence in Grenoble, France, including providing customers with the opportunity to work with ISVs, and HP and Intel engineers to modernize code. The center in Grenoble enables customers, developers, and ISVs to carry out proof of concept, benchmarks, and characterizations to optimize the infrastructure for HPC-related workloads.
The new center in Houston is expected to better support the North American market.