Will Virtualization Spur Hardware Demand?

Arthur Cole

Has virtualization's impact on the RISC-based hardware market been overblown? It seems that way if the latest market research is to be believed.


Conventional wisdom holds that as virtualization takes hold in the datacenter and beyond, demand for physical hardware will drop. But reality could prove just the opposite, according to research firm TheInfoPro.


The company recently surveyed large- and mid-sized enterprises and found that 30 percent had spent more than $3 million on RISC-based systems in the past year, with 40 percent indicating that their capital IT budgets actually increased from 2006 to 2007.


Some observers might note that virtualization has only just begun to crack open the enterprise market, and its real impact on hardware is probably a few years off at best. However, Bob Gill, TIP's managing director of server research, says much of the new spending is aimed at acquiring new systems specifically to host virtualization platforms and notes that hardware is expected to make up about 38 percent of overall server budgets through 2008.


The firm also reports that top buyers seem genuinely pleased with the service and fulfillment experiences with their current vendors, with only small fractions looking to change at this point.

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