By Sohini Bagchi

In a few hours, 2018 will be behind us. The IT channel, one of the largest and key segments in tech industry has seen many ups and downs, challenges and opportunities as well as seen many new developments with the changing business and technology landscape. ChannelTimes selected some of the top stories that shaped the IT channel this year.

AI, Automation Can Revive The Fortunes Of Channel Partners

A new research has revealed that the traditional partner program is no longer held with the same regard by the channel partners. The survey by Canalys shows that the percentage of partners that view channel programs as important when evaluating IT vendor relationships had dropped from 94 percent in 2016 to just 77 percent today. In addition, nine percent of the channel firms questioned rated partner programs as “not at all important”.

Why Quantum Is So Much At Ease With Its Channel Partners

In a recent interaction with Channel Times, Jim Simon, Vice President of Global Field and Channel Marketing, Quantum Corp., explains the new trends in enterprise storage technologies, why channel partners play such an important role to the vendor, touting them as the ‘easiest to work with’ and how Quantum is boosting sales for channel while continuously solving storage related problems for its customers.

3 Challenges Resellers, Partners Likely To Face In 2019

IT resellers and channel partners play an important role in establishing any brands and helping offer extensive market reach and coverage. Despite this, partners have their own sets of challenges, owing to the changing economic and business scenario. This often hinders their success and profitability. According to a new study, there were three standout challenges that were mentioned most frequently and appeared key to success in 2019.

How IT Channel Can Gain From Lenovo-NetApp Partnership

Lenovo has signed a storage alliance with NetApp, in a bid to challenge the market led by Dell EMC and Hewlett Packard Enterprise. The two companies are also aligning their channel partner program as part of a wider strategic alliance. Both the companies are very focused on channel partners and the partnership can lead them to new segments and to new customers. For Lenovo’s channel partners, it would mean a big win, against players such as Dell EMC and HPE.

How VARs Can Help US, European Firms Crack The Indian Market

The rise of India as a major consumer of technology market has been well established . Between multi-billion dollar mandates from the Indian government for the development of smart cities and Indian entrepreneurs beginning to leverage the talent coming out of Indian, the Indian market is going to be spending a lot more on IT.

GATES India Summit Empowers Channel To Go ‘The Digital Way

Now in its fourth edition, the GATES India ICT Reseller Summit begins with much fanfare in Westin Kolkata this year. The three day annual summit held from September 4-6, brings together international technology vendors with channel executives from across India including several key distributors, system integrators and resellers to drive the channel business in the country.

Kaspersky Lab Introduces ‘Buy And Fly’ Channel Partner Schemehttp://www.channeltimes.com/story/kaspersky-lab-introduces-buy-and-fly-channel-partner-scheme/

Kaspersky Lab’s Data Guardian, Midori Kuma, (also known as the Green Bear globally) is now in India and is all set to protect the data of hundreds of Indians. To further facilitate the launch of the new Green Bear packaging for its products, Kaspersky has announced a Channel Partner Scheme for its partners.

“AV Industry is Fast Evolving Into a Hi-Tech Sector”

Crestron is a global manufacturer of advanced control and automation systems. Its solutions are built on a validated architecture, using best-in-class technology that integrates unified communications, AV presentation, IT, lighting, audio and environmental systems and works across industry sectors. In an exclusive chat with Channel Times, Gagan Verma – Executive Director India & SAARC, Crestron, explains the various challenges and opportunities in the AV industry and the company’s different initiatives in this space.

Apple India’s New Sales Strategy May Hurt Small Retailers

Apple is revamping its sales strategies in India in a bid to stabilize pricing of its products. In a step to that direction, the iPhone maker has reportedly discontinued any discounts and offers that were earlier seen in the market. Apple’s new move may come as a ‘rude shock’ to small retailers and channel partners, who were used to offering big discounts on Apple smartphones and laptops, since earlier to their customers.

Channel Partners See Huge Prospects In Video Surveillance Biz

The video surveillance market has seen a dramatic growth over the last few years as several high-profile security breaches and threats have impacted the global business environment. In a recent interaction with Channel Times, Amit Sarkar, Country Manager - India & SAARC at Milestone Systems, explains how the company is focusing on channel partners as it taps into the market potential in India.