Revamped IDC Storage Tracker anoints Dell as external storage top dog

More market share than HPE, IBM and NetApp combined

The latest IDC Storage Tracker says top dog Dell Technologies has more external storage revenue share than HPE, IBM and NetApp combined.

The previous Storage Tracker format separated external enterprise storage (arrays) from total enterprise storage, which includes storage sold with servers, and provided tabulated results for both. Now IDC merely provides tabulated data on external enterprise storage* in its public release.

IDC says its numbers for the total worldwide enterprise storage systems category for the fourth 2016 quarter show that:

  • Factory revenue was down 6.7 per cent year-over-year at $11.1bn
  • Total capacity shipments were up 18.3 per cent y-o-y to 52.4 exabytes
  • Original design manufacturers (ODMs) revenue was up 3.2 per cent y-o-y to $1.2bn
  • Server-based storage declined 7.8 per cent y-o-y with $3.4bn in revenue
  • External storage systems with $6.4 Bn in sales saw a y-o-y decline of 7.8 per cent
  • The All Flash Array (AFA) market generated almost $1.7bn in revenue, up 61.2 per cent y-o-y
  • Hybrid Flash Arrays (HFA) had $2.5bn in revenue and a 38.4 per cent market share

IDC no longer provides public top-five vendor information in the total worldwide enterprise storage systems category, so we don't know how well suppliers are doing.

Liz Conner, IDC storage systems research manager, summarised thusly: "While the broader enterprise storage systems market has been impacted by headwinds, companies continue to increase their investments in several key areas, such as software-defined storage, cloud-based storage, all-flash storage systems, and converged systems. As a result, traditional enterprise storage vendors have aligned their portfolios to meet the shifting demands."

External storage systems market

However, in the external enterprise storage systems market, we are given top-five vendor information by IDC. Here it is tabulated (revenues are in millions).

Vendor Groups 4Q16 Revenue 4Q16 Market Share 4Q15 Revenue 4Q15 Market Share 4Q16/4Q15 Revenue Growth
1. Dell Technologies $2,124.9 32.9% $2,570.3 36.8% -17.3%
T2. HPE $656.5 10.2% $706.5 10.1% -7.1%
T2. IBM $653.8 10.1% $791.4 11.3% -17.4%
T2. NetApp $642.0 10.0% $650.9 9.3% -1.4%
5. Hitachi $451.6 7.0% $532.0 7.6% -15.1%
Others $1,920.0 29.8% $1,741.8 24.9% 10.2%
All Vendors $6,499,0 100.0% $6,992.9 100.0% -7.8%

Source: IDC Worldwide Quarterly Enterprise Storage Systems Tracker, March 3, 2016. HPE includes the new HC3 Group.

Here’s an IDC chart looking at recent quarters;


Having bought EMC, Dell Technologies now wipes the floor with everyone else. As this market shrank by 7.8 per cent over the year, Hitachi, IBM and Dell did worse than the market, HPE roughly tracked it, NetApp did very well comparatively, while the Others category grew 10.2 per cent.

This decline in external storage revenues for Dell provides some context for its decision to end-of-life DSSD. Even top dogs have to cull their pack sometimes. ®

*IDC says it has a new methodology for sizing the server-based storage market that is now more inclusive, thus increasing the size of the market in terms of value, systems shipped, and capacity consumed. Changes to the server-based storage market have been applied retroactively to ensure continuity with past quarters.

Biting the hand that feeds IT © 1998–2021