IBM has started sublimating the SoftLayer brand and will henceforth put its own Bluemix brand front and centre.
Or as Big Blue puts it “the Bluemix moniker now encompasses Bluemix services and SoftLayer offerings like bare metal servers.”
If you're a SoftLayer customer, nothing changes. Indeed, IBM says SoftLayer “will remain in place as fundamental building blocks upon which the broader Bluemix catalog will be built.” SoftLayer's portal and other online presences will remain in place and there will be cross-pollination between SoftLayer's site and Bluemix's so that users can order from both services' catalogues on the site they currently prefer.
IBM's also added the the ability to sign on to a Bluemix account with an IBM ID.
Over time all things cloudy and IBM will appear at ibm.com/bluemix and the SoftLayer brand will go away.
IBM acquired SoftLayer for around US$2bn in 2013. It's since made the “Watson” analytics service the main feature of an as-a-service push that also sees it offer Cloud Foundry and numerous application templates. The company now intends to offer users the chance to not just acquire cloudy infrastructure, SoftLayer-style, but to create an experience that lets them whip up servers, apply templates and quickly spin up stacks that span infrastructure and apps.
That's a powerful proposition that positions IBM handily against AWS, Google and Azure ... if it has built its user experience and underlying infrastructure right. ®
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