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What to expect from HPE Discover 2019

HPE has had a low-key 2019, but this year’s conference should be anything but dull

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As the low-pressure vortex continues to bring traditional summertime weather to the UK, I've hopped on a plane to head to this month's hottest Las Vegas gathering: HPE Discover 2019 (and, with an expected high of 42 degrees Celsius on Wednesday, it will be hot, literally).

Once again, Hewlett Packard Enterprise (HPE) is gathering customers, partners, executives and a smattering of journalists in the Sands Expo Center to tell us about its successes of the past year, provide more information on new products and services it's ready to launch, and its wider plans for the future.

In previous years, it's been a bit easier to speculate on what might come up during the main keynote. We've had former CEO Meg Whitman saying goodbye,' current CEO Antonio Neri saying hello,' and then the split of HP into HPE and HP Inc.

Things have been a bit more sedate over the past 12 months though, which does make my job of predicting what will happen this week a little more difficult. That's not to say there's nothing to talk about, though.

The company recently bought Cray adding yet another string to its high performance computing (HPC) bow. I don't expect a high level of detail on what we can expect from this acquisition in the long term (although I would assume that rather like SGI it will be absorbed into the general HPE IP pool), but I'd be surprised if it isn't at least mentioned.

It's also interesting to note that Keerti Melkote, HPE's president of intelligent edge and co-founder of Aruba - (now HPE's networking business) - will be joining Neri during his keynote on Tuesday. Something tells me we may be in for some big edge computing and/or networking news.

Other perennial topics for HPE include AI and machine learning, hybrid and as-a-service IT including its own GreenLake offering and high-performance enterprise-grade storage.

I suspect we will also hear about the company's recently returned space computer' two Apollo servers that were sent to the International Space Station (ISS) in 2017 to see how this kind of technology performs in orbit, which landed back on terra firma a couple of weeks ago. While I'm not expecting a big song and dance, it would be a missed opportunity for the company not to at least celebrate the achievement in some way.

Something I'm expecting to hear less about, however, is The Machine. Originally billed as a completely new form of architecture, it then morphed into a research project and seems perhaps to have been gently absorbed into HPE Labs. Not really something that warrants top billing.

HPE Discover kicks off today with the channel partner conference, with the main event kicking off tomorrow. Stay tuned to Channel Pro, Cloud Pro and IT Pro for all the latest news and analysis from the show.

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