Dell Helps Mars Rover's Landing - Analyst Blog

By Zacks Equity Research,

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NASA reported that the Mars rover, which set out on November 26, 2011, made a safe landing thanks to the support from Dell Inc. ( DELL ).  NASA scientists hailed Dell, saying that the landing was the 'most complicated portion of the mission.'

Two NASA High Performance Computing (HPC) clusters running Dell PowerEdge servers conducted the data analysis for NASA. The Mars rover, Curiosity, is the largest rover ever sent to explore Mars. Curiosity is being managed and controlled by NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) in Pasadena, California, which is using Dell HPC clusters.

NASA's Curiosity rover was aided by Galaxy and Nebula, the Dell HPC clusters to analyze the vast amounts of test data that were necessary for the rover to successfully enter the Martian atmosphere and land safely. This was a key achievement for Dell, building its experience in space research and improving its prospects with government departments.

Government aside, the company is also launching multiple solutions for the Small & Medium Business (SMB) segment. Dell's SMB segment has performed particularly well in the first quarter of 2013 and it appears that its server, software, storage and any other offerings capable of facilitating transition to the cloud will be snapped up by SMB customers. The success in this segment is because SMBs take quick decisions and there is less process involved in the approval.

Moreover, to woo customers from different segments of the society and to diversify its customer base, Dell has also introduced the Predictive Analytics-Based Decision Support System for schools and universities. This is basically a decision support system that helps to personalize the learning environment for students and enhances expertise in planning, management and reporting.

The solution helps in managing and accumulating student's data among different schools, which in turn is used by parents and educators to develop different skillsets in students. This should be a steady and dependable source of revenue as education is a recession-proof business.

However, macroeconomic factors, currency and competitive challenges remain headwinds for Dell's overall performance. Moreover, the company faces certain sales execution issues, which may delay the revenue recognition process. This apart, some modest accounting issues along with volatility in the currency market may also affect the company's business.

Currently, Dell has a Zacks #4 Rank, which implies a short-term Sell rating.

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The views and opinions expressed herein are the views and opinions of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of Nasdaq, Inc.

This article appears in: Investing , Business , Stocks
Referenced Stocks: DELL , SMB

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