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Pure Storage's latest arrays cost DOUBLE what it claimed earlier

Hey, who wants a top-spec 250TB FA-450? I dunno, you got $900K?

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Our Pure Storage range expansion story about the firm's FlashArray 400 series arrays prompted a missive from Pure saying that we'd got the price wrong. Which is strange given that we were quoting Pure's own figures.

According to Pure Storage's marketing bods, low-end model pricing for the FA-405 and FA-450 arrays was $6 to $8/GB and not $3 to $4/GB, which we originally reported last week – headline: "Hey, who wants a 40TB all-flash Pure box? I dunno, you got $160k?"

Using the $3 to $4/GB range, as featured in Pure's press release, we calculated the entry-level FA-405 would cost roughly $120,000 to $160,000 for a fully configured, 40TB usable, machine.

Pure said the FA-405 started at a price significantly less than $100,000. Marketeer Max Kixmoeller told The Register:

  • Pure doesn't set end-user "street" pricing since we sell through the channel (this would be illegal)...but we can give you estimates of what end-user pricing is at typical discounts and channel mark-ups. These will vary though by country, reseller, and volume of product purchased. Hence we tend to talk about ranges vs. absolute numbers.
  • Pure markets end-user pricing "starting at $3-$4/GB". This is for our larger systems, as the larger systems amortise the cost of the controllers over a large amount of flash. The more flash you add to a system, the lower the $/GB gets. Smaller systems have a higher $/GB as a result of this, typically in the $6-8/GB range.
  • So, to give you some examples:
    • Our new highest-end system is the FA-450, fully-configured with 250TBs usable, and that goes for $800 to 900K. $900K/250TB = $3.6/GB. Higher discounts would make it less expensive.
    • Our lowest-end system is the FA-405, configured with 10TB usable, which goes for $80-100K. At $80K, that would be $8/GB usable.
    • All the "usable" numbers above include all overhead (RAID, HA, FlashCare Reserve), and add the value of data reduction at typical rates.
  • Customers who buy large systems tend to be more focused on $/GB as the metric they look at, hence the $3-4/GB marketing range we use. Smaller customers tend to be focused on total acquisition cost, hence we say "Systems available for less than $100K”.

By extrapolation, a 40TB FA-405 at $8/GB would cost $360,000 and, at a $6/GB cost, would sting you for $240,000. Not cheap. ®

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