Feeds

Tape business shows steep decline

Heading for irrelevance?

Securing Web Applications Made Simple and Scalable

The tape drive and media business shrank by a quarter in 2009. At this rate it could enter irrelevance in a few years time.

Tape market tracking organisation the Santa Clara Consulting Group said (pdf) tape drive and media sales represented a $1.58bn market in 2009, down 25 per cent from $2.1bn in 2008, which was lower than the $2.28bn reported in 2007. We (El Reg), charted the effect of a continuing decline at this 25 per cent rate.

Register Tape Market forecast at 25 per cent annual decline

Register chart showing tape market decline at 25 per cent annual shrinkage.

Drives accounted for $629.28m and media for $955.53m of the revenue. LTO format products accounted for the majority of the 2009 business; its drives represented 83.3 per cent of drive revenue, with HP accounting for 51.1 per cent of that.

HP also sold the most LTO media at 31.24 per cent, with Fuji second at 12.7 per cent.

DDS/DAT drive sales amounted to $114.25m, down 31 per cent from the $165.37m total in 2008, representing just seven per cent of the total back-up technology market. DAT media accounted for $44.55m, with drives representing $69.7m. HP had more than half of the DAT media sales. The new DAT-160 format gained traction but with this rate of overall DDS/DAT market decline there's less and less chance of a DAT-320 format arriving.

Removable disk drive and dock sales are rising as ProStor's RDX format becomes more popular and its faster backup and restore speeds resonate well with small business customers less and less willing to wait while slow tape drives backup their data.

Quantum's DLT-V format drive and media unit sales were both off. The drives had sales of a near-trivial $3.95m in 2009 and media accounted for just $22.7m

LTO drives and media have the best outlook: LTO drive sales are expected to grow at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 2.47 per cent from 2009 to 2014, with the media not actually growing, but declining least compared to other media formats at a CAGR of -2.21 per cent.

The recession no doubt contributed to the fall in tape drive and media sales from 2008 to 2009 but the changeover to disk-to-disk backup has to be the main reason for tape revenues to be falling so precipitously. A continued overall 25 per cent decline will see the tape market drop below $500m revenues in just four years. At that point virtually every format will be in maintenance mode. ®

The Essential Guide to IT Transformation

More from The Register

next story
Manic malware Mayhem spreads through Linux, FreeBSD web servers
And how Google could cripple infection rate in a second
EU's top data cops to meet Google, Microsoft et al over 'right to be forgotten'
Plan to hammer out 'coherent' guidelines. Good luck chaps!
US judge: YES, cops or feds so can slurp an ENTIRE Gmail account
Crooks don't have folders labelled 'drug records', opines NY beak
FLAPE – the next BIG THING in storage
Find cold data with flash, transmit it from tape
Seagate chances ARM with NAS boxes for the SOHO crowd
There's an Atom-powered offering, too
Intel teaches Oracle how to become the latest and greatest Xeon Whisperer
E7-8895 v2 chips are best of the bunch, and with firmware-unlocked speed control
prev story

Whitepapers

Top three mobile application threats
Prevent sensitive data leakage over insecure channels or stolen mobile devices.
The Essential Guide to IT Transformation
ServiceNow discusses three IT transformations that can help CIO's automate IT services to transform IT and the enterprise.
Mobile application security vulnerability report
The alarming realities regarding the sheer number of applications vulnerable to attack, and the most common and easily addressable vulnerability errors.
How modern custom applications can spur business growth
Learn how to create, deploy and manage custom applications without consuming or expanding the need for scarce, expensive IT resources.
Consolidation: the foundation for IT and business transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.