vCloud Air – Pulling Back Credit Card Payments

A couple of days ago an email dropped into my inbox from VMware titled “Important Notice About Your VMware vCloud Air OnDemand Account” My first thought was that this was the take down notice similar to what we saw in Japan a month or so ago however thankfully the email was letting existing VCA OnDemand customers know that from the 1st of August vCloud Air would not be processing credit card payments for the service.

From the email its states that:

If You are currently paying for vCloud Air OnDemand via a credit card. To ensure uninterrupted service and access to your instance, you can

  • Transition your instance payment method to pre-purchased service credits via our Subscription Purchase Program (SPP)
  • If you do prefer to keep paying by credit card, you may work with one of our VMware Partners who offer a credit card billing option

Effectively this is turning a Pay-As-You-Go service to one that is pre-paid and then billed in the rears via the Subscription Purchase Program. It also effectively blocks out the general public from swiping their credit card and spinning up VMs. These credits are available to buy through one of VMware’s Sales Specialists via an email address mechanism as pointed out in the FAQ here. The other option is using an vCAN SP’s ability to purchase credits and transact through them.

http://vcloud.vmware.com/using-vcloud-air/spp-migration

So what does this say about vCloud Air’s future? Honestly I don’t know what to make of this however I do know that it makes vCAN Service Providers who have online purchase facilities and automation (such as Zettagrid) instantly more attractive than VCA….hopefully it doesn’t work in the opposite and push potential customers straight to AWS or Azure. Interestingly enough VMware has addressed the question of VCA’s future directly in the FAQ.

Q: Is this action evidence that VMware is not committed to vCloud Air?
A: VMware remains committed to vCloud Air, and continues to invest in and operate vCloud Air as a business and platform with a robust roadmap validating our vision. We continue to offer our customers choices of how to extend their private workloads to the public cloud as well as how they pay for their vCloud Air instances.

Key Dates:

Date* Action Requested
May 31, 2016 Start of 60-day window to transition SPP or Partner
July 31, 2016 Last day to transition to SPP or Partner to avoid service suspension. After suspension, your data will be retained for 90 days but no access will be available**
October 31, 2016 Final day to transition to SPP or Partner. Access to your workloads will be discontinued after this date and your data will no longer be available

References:

http://vcloud.vmware.com/using-vcloud-air/vca-faq-cc-2016?mid=2402&eid=CVMW2000018547705

http://vcloud.vmware.com/using-vcloud-air/vca-faq-cc-2016?mid=2402&eid=CVMW2000018547705

6 comments

  • Allow me to share some insight from an insider. VCA has had far more demand for large scale subscription based procurement, rather than meter-by-the-second AWS type consumption . In almost all cases, Enterprise customers don’t really want to purchase via credit card. It’s interesting that you see this as a negative for VCA rather than a more focused approach. No offence intended, but as you are someone who regularly likes to call out cheap shots and guerrilla marketing, this blog seems a little hypocritical… all my opinion of course.

    • Hey Kev. You know I am one of VMware’s biggest supporters and champions…my feelings and posts around vCloud Air even back in the Zephyr days have been honest, open and consistent. That said I am a stronger believer and supporter of the vCloud Air Network and I have always used Zettagrid as an example in my posts.

      This wasn’t a cheap shot and certainly not a marketing grab…it was opinion on what I see to be another backwards step for VCA and yet another change of messaging from where it was 18-12 months ago. There is huge advantage in offering large scale allocation pool models but I don’t agree with you at all that Enterprises don’t want to pay via CC and VCA has shutout a significant part of the market now…the tinkerers the they guys who just want to give the service a go.

      Its fair to say that what VMware do with VCA reflects on the vCAN in some way, however its been great to see a renewed focus on the vCAN and as I said in the post this will hopefully allow clients to filter through to vCAN SPs who have the facilities. There are a lot of great vCAN SPs around the world and I want the network keep growing …there is still huge opportunity in Hybrid cloud out there.

  • No doubt that you are a fantastic advocate for VMware mate and I always enjoy reading your blog.

    The cheap shot reference was more in relation to your wording. Saying stuff like ‘…makes vCAN Service Providers who have online purchase facilities and automation (such as Zettagrid) instantly more attractive than VCA’ is seems like a blatant spruik to me.

    • I’m extremely proud of what we have done with VMware’s Cloud and Networking platforms and what we have built around it with other great partners so of course I’m going to spruik Zettagrid where possible, i’ve done it before and I’ll continue to do it…that shouldn’t be a surprise?

      Should I have mentioned, iLAND Cloud, Bluelock, CenturyLink, Denit, IndonesianCloud, TeraGo as other awesome examples?

      Appreciate your take on that part of the post…my intention is never to discredit but I think most would argue my statement is 100% on the mark. End of the day if Zettagrid or any of the above do well then VMware does well…we are all in it together in the vCAN.

      • Admittedly ‘spruik’ was a poor choice of wording on my part… Positioning VCA in a negative light to promote Zetta is what’s implied, but I suppose the messaging depends which lens you look through…

        • That’s what happens when vendors compete directly against their partners right?

          Can’t see eye to eye all the time.

          VMware still value their SPs which I appreciate but VCA in any form does cause an uneasy feeling between SPs and those who push VCA first.

          Can’t see why you are surprised or that it’s an issue honestly…prefer not to talk like this in a public forum but you shot first 🙂

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