Moving to the Cloud will no longer be a tough choice: NetApp

Data management vendor also foresees demand for flash storage will remain strong this year

Tensions within IT on whether and how to move to the Cloud should finally be resolved this year, according to NetApp.

A/NZ managing director, Steve Manley, said businesses are now ready to accept the hybrid Cloud model as a means to bolster their business.

“CIOs will also sort their application portfolio into those they must control entirely, partially, and those best purchased as Software-as-a-Service,” he said.

As a result of this approach, Manley said that IT departments will take on the role of brokers across diverse Cloud models.

Internal IT will also been seen as “one more service option” as CIOs move to managing a collection of Cloud services.

“All IT infrastructure owned by the organisation will begin to be considered part of its private Cloud,” Manley said.

The responsiveness, cost-competitiveness and service-level agreements already expected of external Cloud options will in turn be applied internally.

The positive outcome of this is that it is anticipated to create opportunities for resellers, as Manley said customers will need assistance in ensuring internal IT can provide the required Cloud services to the business.

The allure of flash

The biggest surprise for NetApp was the growth in demand for Flash solutions, as well as the innovation it saw with the technology in the overall industry.

Manley highlights the explosion of Flash as “one of the most disruptive technology trends” that businesses need to face today.

“Organisations from all sectors are taking notice, and savvy resellers have worked closely with their customers to help them keep up with the shift,” he said.

NetApp’s own customers have shown a strong preference for flash storage in 2013, with the data management vendor shipping over 60PB of flash storage to its customers to date.

Manley said businesses are looking to create an optimal solution for their workloads, and Cloud-integrated and flash-accelerated data management technology enables that.

Increased growth in the flash market this year is expects, and Manley said this will mean competition between “mainstream players and bleeding edge offerings” will intensify.

Even with growing competition, Manley said opportunities around flash remain, as there are multiple ways to utilise the technology, and offering a broad and complete flash portfolio will aid in meeting customer requirements.

“This is a contest that will ultimately be won by the solutions that best enable customers to deploy the right level of performance, reliability, and scalability for their varying needs,” he said.

Patrick Budmar covers consumer and enterprise technology breaking news for IDG Communications. Follow Patrick on Twitter at @patrick_budmar.

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