A seemingly insatiable demand for storage saw demand for disk system capacity rocket in the fourth quarter of 2004, resulting in a year-over-year increase of almost two thirds in the global petabyte capacity shipped.
IDC reported today that the total global disk storage systems market grew by 1.8 per cent year-over-year rate in the fourth quarter of 2004, with internal storage revenues growing faster than external storage.
The analyst firm's Worldwide Quarterly Disk Storage Systems Tracker found that, for the full year 2004, the external disk storage systems market posted 4.7 per cent revenue growth over 2003 to $14.2bn.
"The fourth quarter was the only quarter showing positive growth for internal disk storage systems during the year, largely due to strong server sales at the end of the year," said Brad Nisbet, programme manager in IDC's Storage Systems Programme.
"However, it is encouraging to see continued acceleration in the annual growth rate for external disk storage systems petabytes, which grew 63 per cent in 2004.
"With revenue accelerating, but at a slower pace, average pricing remains competitive during the ongoing influx of higher-capacity drives and applications."
In the total worldwide disk storage systems market (combining internal plus external storage devices) HP maintained its lead with 24.2 per cent revenue share followed by IBM with 22.5 per cent share. EMC maintained the third position with 14.5 per cent revenue share.
Dell and EMC posted the largest year-over-year revenue growth among the top five vendors during the quarter, with 15.8 per cent and 13.4 per cent points gained respectively.
EMC maintained its lead in the external disk storage systems market with 22.0 per cent revenue share, followed by HP and IBM with 19.4 per cent and 13.1 per cent revenue share respectively.
Hitachi and Dell rounded out the top five with 8.2 per cent and 7.2 per cent, respectively. Among the top five suppliers, EMC and Dell posted the strongest year-over-year revenue growth during thr fourth quarter of 2004, with 15.2 per cent and 13.4 per cent growth respectively.
For the full year 2004, IDC noted that EMC took the number one external storage position, previously held by HP, with 21.1 per cent revenue share. HP and IBM followed with 18.7 per cent and 12.6 per cent share respectively.
The total network storage market (Nas combined with Open and iSCSI San) posted 11.6 per cent year-over-year growth in the fourth quarter to more than $2.4bn, the highest quarterly revenue recorded.
EMC continues to maintain its leadership in the total network storage market with 29.0 per cent revenue share, followed by HP and IBM with 23.7 per cent and 11.2 per cent revenue share respectively.
In the Nas market, which grew 14.7 per cent year over year, Network Appliance led with 36.9 per cent revenue share, followed by EMC with 32.8 per cent share.
The iSCSI San market was found to continue to show strong momentum, posting nearly 32 per cent revenue growth compared to the previous quarter.
"In 2004, the market for iSCSI San grew beyond the $100m barrier, led mostly by the adoption of midrange systems priced between $15,000 and $149,999," said Natalya Yezhkova, senior research analyst, IDC Storage Systems.
"Open San and Nas also experienced a shift of revenue from high-end to lower price bands, driven by the continuing drop in prices on disk storage systems and more competitive product offerings.
"During 2004, all the major vendors added new entry-level and midrange products to their portfolios, often accompanied by more sophisticated software offerings previously available only on high-end systems."
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