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EMC rakes in more of the world's storage, others struggle

IBM lags, Oracle division continues to shrink

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EMC is controlling more and more of the world's disk storage and Oracle is controlling less and less, according to trackers at Gartner.

In a report on the worldwide external controller-based disk storage market released on Thursday, EMC had 34.2 per cent of the market in the quarter and recorded revenues of $2.067bn – a 6.7 per cent increase on last year. IBM followed in a distant second with revenues of $976m and a share of 16.2 per cent, down 0.1 per cent on the previous year.

EMC saw strong growth thanks to its "fit-for-purpose" VNX, VMAX and Data Domain platforms, Gartner wrote, along with the benefits gleaned from its 2010 acquisition of Isilon. It also benefited from weakness among its competitors.

NetApp and Hitachi trailed in third ($637.3, 10.6 per cent) and fourth place (570.4m, 9.4 per cent). HP limped behind in fifth place with $479.4m and 7.9 per cent, and Dell followed HP with revenues of $393.1m and a share of 6.5 per cent.

"Dell, HP and IBM continue to underperform the market and lose share for fundamentally the same reasons. Their new product year-on-year revenue gains are insufficient to offset the year-on-year decline of the products being replaced," the Gartner report said.

"Moreover, Dell may be suffering from organisational and structural issues that are hampering sales. HP continues to struggle with balancing the decline in what it classifies as "traditional storage" with its growing "converged" go-to-market model. IBM's strategy of emphasising its IP-based disk storage products is gaining traction, but is not yet strong enough to offset declines in technology sourced from NetApp."

Fujitsu and Oracle rounded of the top eight, with both companies seeing major declines compared to the previous year. Fujitsu was down 9.8 per cent. Oracle was down a massive 23.7 per cent – a figure that mirrors the dismal general hardware figures in Oracle's most recent earnings report.

The Gartner figures echo those of IDC, which issued a report in mid-March showing a similar set of relationships – the main difference being IDC groups Oracle and Fujitsu in with a grab-bag "other" category and Gartner breaks them out. We imagine Oracle prefers IDC's methodology.

But the real loser may be the global economy, whose sick state kept year-on-year growth at an anemic 1.9 percent, with Q4's $6.038bn of worldwide revenue barely improving on 2011's $5.923bn – and that's before you factor in currency inflation. ®

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