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Storage Software Sales Up, Trend To Continue

Storage software sales in the third quarter increased by an "impressive" 4.2 percent over the same quarter last year, said research firm IDC Wednesday, pointing to a solid 2003 which should, in turn, lead to a just-as-robust 2004.

"In general, storage software has been a pretty hot market for the past couple of years," said Bill North, the research director of IDC's storage software division. "But these third quarter numbers are really impressive."

The boom in storage sales stems from several factors, North said, including a general rebounding of the world's economies as well as a re-dedication on the part of enterprises to better manage what storage capacity they already have.

"One of the things that's been on hold [within enterprise budgets] is storage," North said. "Two years ago companies over committed in buying storage capacity. Now they've used most of that excess capacity and are buying more hardware. That leads to more software purchases."

Additionally, he said, the increased reliance on storage networks -- pools of storage servers that can be redirected to handle capacity within the organization as the need arises -- means more storage software must be deployed. "Storage networks have really come out of the closet and gone mainstream," North said, "and they need more sophisticated software."

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