IDC’s European Storage Survey Tells of a Market Shift Towards Tactical Spending, Though Cuts Less Likely for Storage Than Other Areas of IT

LONDON — February 10, 2009 — IDC's EMEA storage research team today announced the completion of its seventh annual storage survey, entitled: IDC's Annual European Storage Survey: Understanding User Needs in a Changing Economic Climate (IDC #RS53R). The results of this 38-question survey explore the awareness and adoption of new storage technologies while also assessing the impact external forces are having on European storage budgets.

Deteriorating economic environments are causing many storage managers to rethink how they spend their budgets. It is notable, consequently, that quick-fix solutions topped the list of choices our respondents provided when asked what changes were most likely to occur as a result of current economic conditions. Indeed, survey respondents were most likely to deal with economic downturns by:

Freezing spending related to new projects

Switching to lower-cost technology, or

Increasing the approvals needed for spending decisions

Of further interest was the fact that storage was far less likely to experience spending cuts during these difficult economic times than other technologies such as PCs, printers, servers, and networking equipment.

"Changing economic conditions and new technologies such as server and storage virtualization are clearly altering the way European storage managers design and deploy their storage infrastructure," said Eric Sheppard, program manager for IDC's EMEA storage research. "Our survey suggests that the current economic conditions will result in a short-term shift towards tactical spending on storage, while rising adoption of server virtualization is driving new interest in advanced features provided by storage virtualization offerings."

Other topics covered in this survey include:

Applications driving demand for more storage Most common causes of storage downtime and their costs to European organizations Current and future interest in server and storage virtualization Exploration of data protection and business continuity processes Plans for spending on storage services such as consulting, outsourcing, or storage as a service

IDC believes that Europe's storage market is in the midst of rapid change. Understanding how these changes impact the way storage is deployed, utilized, and managed will be critical to those interested in solving real-world storage problems. IDC's European storage survey can therefore be an invaluable tool for anyone trying to identify market changes while also ensuring an increased understanding of market needs and expectations.

The survey contains findings and analysis of a 38-question survey of 522 European storage decision makers. The survey was carried out in December 2008 and January 2009 in the United Kingdom, Germany, France, Italy, Spain, and the Nordics. The organizations polled were distributed across multiple company sizes and industries, though companies with fewer than 50 employees were excluded.

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