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Merrill Lynch Sizes Up Network Storage: Page 2 of 3

Driving the market towards a networked storage model are networked applications, such as email. These account for 24 percent of the demand for storage today but within three years will represent half, he says. “Newer networked applications like rich media, streaming media, and cross-enterprise applications all require a network infrastructure, and additional applications will be created for this."

He predicts the software for replication, mirroring, and backup needed to run externally networked applications will generate up to ten times the amount of original data -- in turn, increasing the demand for more storage.

The downturn in the economy will have an impact on this market over the next two years, Kraemer feels, with pricing pressures, delayed decision-making, and less spending affecting the sector just as is the case with the rest of the IT market -- so no big surprises there.

Within the storage sector itself, “SAN adoption will be affected more than any another because of the high up-front costs associated with it.” But this should only last while companies continue to support direct attached systems as they migrate over to SANs.

Expecting the buildout of SANs -- constructing, managing, outsourcing, and distributing storage as a service -- to be a lucrative endeavor, Kraemer is clearly in favor of the emerging SSP model.