IDC Lowers Its 2009 Expectations for the External Disk Storage Systems Market, But Sees Rebound in 2010

FRAMINGHAM, Mass. – March 30, 2009 – The global economic crisis continues to plague many technology sectors, including disk storage systems. IDC expects total disk storage systems spending will experience -6.7% year-over-year worldwide growth in 2009; however, this market sector is anticipated to increase 1.5% in 2010 over 2009. External disk storage systems end-user worldwide sales will grow -3.1% in 2009 over the previous year. Overall disk storage capacity worldwide is expected to grow less than 35% in 2009, while external disk storage systems capacity will experience 44% growth in 2009 – a clear departure from the traditional 50-60% annual growth seen in previous years.

Although 2009 appears very weak, IDC expects the demand for external disk storage systems over the next five years will remain relatively healthy in support of the vast growth of digital information. From a revenue perspective, the five year compound annual growth rate (CAGR) from 2008 to 2013 of 1.9% reflects market recovery assuming annual cost per gigabyte declines of about 30% over the same time period.

"We expect data generation worldwide will slow only a little over the next five years," says Natalya Yezhkova, research manager, Storage Systems. "However, we do expect a slowdown in the growth of new storage systems capacity shipments. The economic crisis is the most powerful driver for this slowdown in the short-term. Longer-term, a moderate contraction in capacity shipments is expected as technologies that help to increase storage utilization or reduce amounts of data that need to be stored are increasingly adopted."

“We expect the network disk storage systems market (NAS combined with Open SAN) will have an insignificant decline worldwide in 2009, and actually grow in some of the mature and emerging regions," notes Lindsey Varney, research analyst, IDC Worldwide Disk Storage Systems Tracker. "Looking forward, it is anticipated that the network disk storage system market will continue to grow steadily through 2013, fueled by continuously high growth in the iSCSI SAN market. Additionally, after declining in 2009, the Open SAN market will regain its vigor in 2010 and beyond.”

Product Information

To provide further insightful market intelligence, the IDC Worldwide Disk Storage Systems Tracker team introduced the Worldwide Disk Storage Systems Forecast that spans up to two years of quarterly forecast (eight quarters), and five years of annual forecast data. The new product provides IT investors, end-users, and industry leaders a top-down competitive advantage on the future of the disk storage market among the eight major geographies currently covered in IDC’s Disk Storage Systems Tracker.

For more information regarding the IDC Worldwide Disk Storage Systems Forecast, and subscription, please contact Lindsey Varney (+1.508.988.7813 or or Jackie Gadah (+1.508.988.7894 or

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