IDC: EMC Tops Strong 1Q Disk Storage Market

Posted on June 08, 2012 By Pedro Hernandez

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Despite the flooding in Thailand that affected hard drive manufacturing, the worldwide total disk storage system market posted a healthy 6.8 percent increase in year-over-year revenues during the first quarter of 2012 (1Q12) says IDC. And EMC was the big winner.

Revenues nearly reached the $8 billion mark, according to the research firm's Worldwide Quarterly Disk Storage Systems Tracker. Shipped disk storage systems capacity grew 20.8 percent over the year-ago period, accounting for 6,037 petabytes.

External disk storage systems experienced similar gains with year-over-year growth of 7.1 percent and nearly $6.0 billion in revenues. The floods did, however, take a bite of out of one segment of the market, reports IDC senior research analyst Liz Conner.

"Entry-level systems (ASV of less than $25,000) were hit hardest owing to their reliance on SATA and near-line SAS drives, which experienced price increases due to the Thailand floods," said Conner in a company release.

Nonetheless, the disk storage market continues to expand. "However, strong overall growth in emerging regions and the slowdown in price per gigabyte ($/GB) erosion helped the market post year-over-year growth."

EMC Rules, Again

Among vendors, EMC was No. 1 in terms of revenue and market share. The storage giant took home a 29 percent share of external disk systems revenue for a total of $1.7 billion. NetApp follows with $841 million for 14.1 percent share, and IBM claimed 11.4 percent of revenues with $678 million.

Both EMC and NetApp posted double-digit, year-over-year revenue growth of 14.4 percent and 11.1 percent, respectively. IBM suffered a slight 0.5 percent drop.

In terms of the total disk storage system market, EMC leads again with 21.7 percent of the market, and HP comes in second with an 18.2 percent share and more than $1.4 billion in revenues. IBM again claims third place with 14.9 percent market share on nearly $1.2 billion in revenues.

High-End Storage Stumbles

IDC's figures indicate that in 1Q12, midrange storage arrays were the sweet spot. According to Amita Potnis, Storage Systems senior research analyst for IDC, high-end storage system sales are in decline.

"The high-end storage segment (ASP $250,000+) remained flat year over year and declined 13.0% sequentially in the first quarter of 2012. The high-end segment grew significantly in 2010 and 2011 owing to the loosened storage budgets after the economic crisis of 2009," states Potnis.

And the outlook isn't getting any better. "IDC believes that the softened growth in the high-end segment this quarter is reflective of what will be a long-term trend," says Potnis.

Other highlights:

  • Total open networked disk storage grew 8.5 percent year over year in the first quarter, reaching $5.1 billion in revenues. EMC leads with 32 percent of revenues followed by NetApp with 16 percent.
  • Open SAN market grew 13 percent year over year. EMC leads with 28 percent of revenues followed by IBM with nearly 14 percent and HP with 12 percent.
  • iSCSI SANs are a bright spot with 17.6 percent revenue growth year over year. Dell is the leader here with 33 percent revenue share, followed by EMC with nearly 19 percent and NetApp with 13.7 percent.
  • The NAS market dropped 1.9 percent year over year. Again, EMC takes the top spot with nearly 43 percent of revenues followed by NetApp with 36 percent.

Pedro Hernandez is a contributing editor at InternetNews.com, the news service of the IT Business Edge Network, the network for technology professionals. Follow him on Twitter @ecoINSITE.

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