Ingram Micro has revealed it was one of a few Microsoft distributors to gain access to HoloLens devices with the launch set to take place later this year.
The distribution deal will undertake a phased approach, firstly hitting North America, followed by some selected EMEA countries and Australia and New Zealand, with Singapore set to be ready in the second phase.
“It’s a pretty selective distribution model that Microsoft has when it comes to using a defined set of partners in mind to go and sell these devices,” Ingram Micro global vice president of partner engagement Sabine Howest said. “When it comes to mixed reality, there are other aspects such as the IoT side, data collection and the whole software lifecycle around it is very important.”
During its Ingram Micro One APAC conference held in Singapore, Ingram Micro head of IoT Ben Xiang said HoloLens marked its first foray into a brand new product category.
HoloLens is a mass market mixed reality device that was introduced in 2016 and is used in many industries including automotive, aerospace and construction.
Late last year, Microsoft won a US$480 million contract with the US Army that will see soldiers with HoloLens devices for training and combat missions.
Furthermore, Xiang said IoT marked the beginning of a longer term journey for the distributor as it has its sights set on introducing new products, categories and segments.
“We’re really focused on bringing IoT solutions to market and we’ve done a tonne of work in terms of what solutions can drive the best business outcome for our partners and our end customers,” Xiang said.
“We have unique offerings and we’re focused on bringing unique technologies. What this really means is that the solutions we’re bringing to market, are going to be different from those you can find at our competitors.”
Ingram Micro group executive of Asia Pacific Mike Zilis highlighted advanced solutions, cloud, cyber security and IoT were some of the top areas it was investing in.
“They’re our highest growth areas across all of our markets," Zilis said. "We’re really growing in double digits in those areas and expect that to continue as we drive our focus, but it doesn’t mean that a lot of the other areas aren’t important.
"The volume aspects of our business, are still a large percentage of our business, and they’re very important areas that we’re maintaining and growing in different ways.
“HoloLens will be part of the solution effort as we build and architect resources that can really design a solution where augmented reality plays a part, that will be a big part of our focus - along with bringing in the data analytics, hardware and software needs to facilitate that.”
Ingram Micro A/NZ country manager, Felix Wong, further added the investments it was making in specialised resources will take it further up the value chain, specifically in the area of financial services where it has hired people from within the finance industry.
Another area he highlighted was within advanced solutions and investing in technical resources and investing in upskilling the sales and technical force.
In the back office operational area, Wong said it was investing in further automation and robotics to drive additional scale and flexibility to our supply chain.
“We can take our resellers on that journey to sell solutions,” Wong said.
Julia Talevski attended Ingram Micro One APAC as a guest of Ingram Micro.