SMBs Shopping for Storage Have Lots of Options

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The SMB segment of the storage market is especially hot right now, with a slew of product announcements from heavyweights like HP and IBM.


On the heels of HP's rollout of the All-in-One (AiO) 1200, a system that combines storage, data migration/replication, management and protection, IBM is countering with new configurations of its entry-level System Storage DS3000 series and several new storage services offerings.


With the new configurations, IBM is bundling together various components of its DS3200 and DS3400 product lines, in theory making it simpler for SMBs to purchase systems that will suit their storage needs. Several of Big Blue's new services offerings will help SMBs take advantage of hot trends, like the move from direct to network-attached storage that IT Business Edge blogger Arthur Cole wrote about recently.


Why all of the focus on storage? AMI-Partners' prediction that SMB spending on storage and security will grow 19 percent this year could have something to do with it.


In IBM's case, it is likely trying to recover some of the ground it is losing to HP, which edged out Big Blue in revenue in 2006, becoming the largest tech company in the world. Though HP's systems and services businesses are seen as weak links, they may not remain so for long, judging by its strong push to woo SMBs in these markets.