IT Pros Concerned Their Storage Won't Keep Up in 2016

By Pedro Hernandez

Data storage volumes are increasing but a new survey from X-IO Technologies reveals that many IT organizations may not be up to the task of managing that growth.

A new survey from the storage area network (SAN) specialist found that nearly half (48 percent) of the 312 IT professionals polled by the company during IP Expo 2015 and VMworld Europe 2015 don't think their current storage arrays can handle next-generation storage media. Apart from the technical limitations of their data storage environments, many also fear they just won't have the funds to address storage challenges next year.

This summer, IT analyst firm Gartner forecast that worldwide IT spending would fall this year by 5.5 percent to $3.5 trillion.

A strong U.S. dollar is crimping demand for storage systems and networking equipment, according to Gartner. "Vendors do have to raise prices to protect costs and margins of their products, and enterprises and consumers will have to make new purchase decisions in light of the new prices," noted Gartner research vice president John-David Lovelock in a statement.

In 2016, most enterprises will need to make do with their current setups, suggests the survey. A slight majority (57 percent) of respondents said they expect their budgets to shrink or stay the same next year. In fact, IT budget constraints were cited as the top concern for 2016.

"The survey reveals the confusion that businesses are experiencing over the ever-changing storage market," said X-IO Technologies vice president Gavin McLaughlin in prepared remarks. "What is clear, is that companies do not have the budget to keep changing their storage arrays in an attempt to second guess the market."

Many CIOs and IT managers are also grappling with aging storage infrastructures. Forty-eight percent of respondents said the storage they bought five years ago barely serves its purpose today. X-IO also found that 43 percent are seeking improved storage performance in 2016, while 39 percent want to bump up capacity.

Meanwhile, enterprises are facing runaway storage growth.

According to International Data Corporation's (IDC) latest Worldwide Quarterly Disk Storage Systems Tracker report, storage vendors shipped 33.1 exabytes (EB) of storage capacity during the third quarter of 2015, a 31.5 percent year-over-year increase. Some of that growth came at the cost of the traditional storage array market, which declined 3.1 percent on sales of $5.75 billion.

Pedro Hernandez is a contributing editor at InfoStor. Follow him on Twitter @ecoINSITE.

Photo courtesy of Shutterstock.

This article was originally published on December 16, 2015