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Healthy storage spending in 2016, study finds

By Shannon Williams, Tue 23 Feb 2016
FYI, this story is more than a year old

Storage environments within the enterprise will continue to transform in 2016, with most organisations expecting to increase storage spending over the next twelve months.

That’s the word from 451 Research, who’s latest Voice of the Enterprise survey reveals the proportion on spending on public cloud storage service will at least double over the next 24 months, largely at the expense of traditional, on-premises storage.

“The storage infrastructure may have proven itself hardy to change over the years, but it is not immune to the same uber trends that are fundamentally disrupting the role of IT at organisations of all sizes,” explains Simon Robinson, research vice president at 451, and research director of the Voice of the Enterprise: Storage service.

“IT managers are recognising the need for storage transformation to meet the realities of the new digital economy, especially in terms of improved efficiency and agility in the face of relentless data growth,” Robinson explains.

“It’s clear from our Q4 study that emerging options, especially Public Cloud Storage and All-Flash Array technologies, will be increasingly important components in this transformation,” he says.

According to the Voice of the Enterprise: Storage study, storage spending will be healthy in 2016, with over 70% of respondents expecting to increase their storage spending over the next 12 months, compared to 2015.

However, storage spending growth in Europe and among very large organisations (over 10,000 employees) will be weaker than average, as will spending in the government and utilities verticals.

On average, spending on public cloud storage will account for 17% of total enterprise storage spending by 2017, up from 8% today, the study reveals.

In some verticals – such as retail – the public cloud will account for 25% of total storage spending by 2017. Spending on on-premises storage will fall from 70% in 2015 to 58% in 2017.

While the traditional storage players, led by EMC, dominate the list of strategic players today, this looks set to change over the next two years, according to the study. Both Amazon Web Services and Microsoft become top five storage vendors by 2017.

From a storage products perspective, spending will increase the most on public cloud and all-flash arrays, while spending on traditional SAN and NAS products will be more muted. The largest spending declines will be on tape products.

According to the study, dealing with data and storage capacity growth is by far the single greatest pain point for storage managers. Respondents cited improved backup and disaster recovery as top storage objective for 2016.

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