The Mother of All Partner Conferences
The biggest gathering of your peers takes place this July in Boston at Microsoft's Worldwide Partner Conference
- By Scott Bekker
- July 01, 2006
The main event of Microsoft's partner calendar is this month. The Microsoft
Worldwide Partner Conference (WWPC): Velocity 2006 runs July 11-13 in
The amount of new software in the Microsoft pipeline, as well as the
uncertainty surrounding Microsoft's Software as a Service plans, means
that this WWPC promises to be an even more important event than usual.
The speaker schedule indicates the need for plenty of channel preparation
for the pending Microsoft product lineup. Following the opening-day fireworks
of a keynote by Microsoft's energetic CEO Steve Ballmer and partner context
from Allison Watson, vice president of the Worldwide Partner and Small
Business Groups, Microsoft will dive right into the next round of products.
Mike Sievert, corporate vice president, Windows Client Marketing, will
give partners the lowdown on turning Windows Vista into profits. Next,
there's a tour of 2007 Office in a keynote from Chris Capossela, corporate
vice president, Information Worker Product Management Group. Look to Capossela
for tips on building solutions that connect Office desktops into server-side
Microsoft is also lining up executives to give partners the skinny on
other future technologies, such as Exchange Server 2007 and Longhorn Server.
The event will feature recaps on the SQL Server 2005 value proposition
and more detail about turning Microsoft Dynamics into partner revenues.
Outside the big ballrooms, smaller sessions will offer perspectives on
the major Microsoft competencies, along with sales and marketing, business
concerns and customizing vertical solutions.
What's more, we've been assured that Microsoft will use the WWPC to begin
sharing its definitions for the phrase "Software as a Service."
Transparency is necessary for Microsoft to bring its partners along in
the company's transition to a services model. Providing partners with
definitions, even as Microsoft struggles with how the company itself will
manage these changes, is a reassuring step.
If you're going to the show, keep an eye out for RCP's editors.
We'd love to meet you in person and hear what we can do for you. Stop
by our booth (#1220) to let us know what you think of the magazine and
how we can help you strengthen your business.
In a recent reader survey, only three percent of our respondents indicated
they'd attended the WWPC in 2005. If you can't make it this year, be sure
to check our Web site RCPmag.com throughout
the conference for articles and blog entries about all the major developments
from the show.
Scott Bekker is editor in chief of Redmond Channel Partner magazine.