Feeds

VMware inhales SlideRocket for its cloudy presentationware

Next, a heavenly word processor and spreadsheet?

The essential guide to IT transformation

Server-virtualization juggernaut and cloudy-infrastructure wannabe VMware has snapped up another component that it believes will lead it to cloud domination: SlideRocket.

The terms of the acquisition were not disclosed.

SlideRocket was founded in 2007 and burst out of stealth mode in October 2008, delivering its Internet-based presentation-creation software as an alternative to using Windows desktop products such as PowerPoint. The presentation software that SlideRocket created runs on cloudy infrastructure (presumably Amazon EC2, but the company doesn't say) and stores the presentations on Amazon's S3 storage cloud.

The service includes a PowerPoint importer and allows for presentations to be created and displayed on any browser that supports Adobe's Flash Player 10 plug-in: Internet Explorer, Chrome, Firefox, Opera, Safari, and Netscape on a Windows, Mac, or Linux machine. The SlideRocket service also has HTML5-playback features so Flashless iOS devices from Apple, such as iPhones and iPads, can view presentations created on the service.

The SlideRocket service has more than 20,000 customers making presentations and over 300,000 users viewing them. In July 2009, when the company received its $5m in Series B funding from Azure Capital Partners and Hummer Winblad Venture Partners (the latter led SlideRocket's Series A funding), the company tapped Chuck Dietrich, formerly general manager of Salesforce.com's mobile operations, to be CEO, with SlideRocket founder Mitch Grasso assuming the role of CTO.

VMware's acquisition of SpringSource, a supplier of open source Java frameworks, and Rabbit Technologies, for its RabbitMQ messaging platform, make sense as VMware tries to go up the cloud stack from infrastructure clouds to platform clouds.

But many people hearing about the SlideRocket acquisition might think that offering an alternative to a specific desktop application smells a bit like Novell's former CEO Ray Noorda buying up WordPerfect, Corel, and Borland to take a run at Microsoft. A run, you will recall, that failed mightily and landed Novell in the hands of Attachmate two decades later.

The SlideRocket acquisition may or may not pan out for VMware, but the company is not blowing money like a drunken sailor to take on Microsoft's desktop-application hegemony. At least not yet, anyway, and surely not like Novell did in trying to take on Microsoft.

Perhaps someone in the boardrooms of EMC or VMware liked the company's slideware service so much that they bought the company. Perhaps VMware has its eyes on other kinds of services to offer over clouds that are backed by its virtualization products for desktops and servers. ®

5 things you didn’t know about cloud backup

More from The Register

next story
6 Obvious Reasons Why Facebook Will Ban This Article (Thank God)
Clampdown on clickbait ... and El Reg is OK with this
No, thank you. I will not code for the Caliphate
Some assignments, even the Bongster decline must
Barnes & Noble: Swallow a Samsung Nook tablet, please ... pretty please
Novelslab finally on sale with ($199 - $20) price tag
Banking apps: Handy, can grab all your money... and RIDDLED with coding flaws
Yep, that one place you'd hoped you wouldn't find 'em
Video of US journalist 'beheading' pulled from social media
Yanked footage featured British-accented attacker and US journo James Foley
Primetime precrime? Minority Report TV series 'being developed'
I have to know. I have to find out what happened to my life
Netflix swallows yet another bitter pill, inks peering deal with TWC
Net neutrality crusader once again pays up for priority access
Judge nixes HP deal for director amnesty after $8.8bn Autonomy snafu
Lawyers will have to earn their keep the hard way, says court
Ex-IBM CEO John Akers dies at 79
An era disrupted by the advent of the PC
prev story

Whitepapers

Top 10 endpoint backup mistakes
Avoid the ten endpoint backup mistakes to ensure that your critical corporate data is protected and end user productivity is improved.
Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Backing up distributed data
Eliminating the redundant use of bandwidth and storage capacity and application consolidation in the modern data center.
The essential guide to IT transformation
ServiceNow discusses three IT transformations that can help CIOs automate IT services to transform IT and the enterprise
Next gen security for virtualised datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.