Server Makers Dominate Tape Market, Says IDC
August 13, 2007 Timothy Prickett Morgan
The analysts at IDC have cased the tape market for the first quarter of 2007, and the big server makers who peddle tape drives, tape autoloaders, tape libraries, and virtual tape libraries were the big winners.
On a worldwide basis and across all kinds of tape products, IBM came out as the big winner in the IDC rankings in the first quarter, with just under $300 million in sales, giving it a 32.2 percent share of the $931 million market. Hewlett-Packard came in second in tape sales in the quarter, with $232.6 million in sales, with 25 percent of the tape pie. Sun Microsystems, mostly by virtue of its acquisition of StorageTek two years ago, came in third in the rankings, with $145.4 million in sales, giving it 15.6 share. Dell rounded out the top four in the worldwide revenue ranking for tape products, with $98.9 million in sales and 10.6 percent.
While IBM led in terms of tape product sales, HP led in terms of revenues. IDC reckons that 234,158 tape products shipped in the quarter, and HP shipped 37.3 percent of these devices, compared to Dell’s 25.5 percent share and IBM’s 13.4 percent share. Dell is winning at the low-end of the tape market, IBM has a relatively broad product line but high-end sales, Sun has small unit shipments but very large tape libraries, and HP runs the gamut from entry tape drives to virtual tape libraries. IBM and Sun pretty much own the market for what IDC calls enterprise tape drives and tape automation, which unfortunately only accounts for about 17 percent of tape product sales in the first quarter. The tape autoloader and library market is, as you might expect, the belly of this market, accounting for $531.9 million in sales, and midrange products account for 80 percent of what IDC calls tape automation products.