The all-flash-array (AFA) market is steadily edging toward 40% of total shipments in value (37% in the fourth quarter alone and 35% for the full year) and is about to overtake hybrid arrays (HFAs) as the most popular array type. HFAs still accounted for 45.1% of total shipments in value terms for the full year (43.8% for the quarter), though with slower year-on-year growth (+5.8% in 2018Q4 versus 32% growth in AFAs).
The growth in flash-powered arrays is happening at the expense of HDD-only arrays, which remain mostly confined to secondary workloads. HDD-only arrays lost 12.8% year on year for the quarter and 18.4% for the full year.
The Western European market grew 10.1% in dollars and 13.6% in euros in value terms. All-flash arrays played a big part in this increase, at just shy of 38% of total shipments with a year-on-year increase of nearly 25%.
"Storage spending has so far demonstrated great resiliency in the face of political and economic instability hitting the region, with digital transformation–led investments progressing unscathed," said Silvia Cosso, research manager, European Storage and Datacenter Research, IDC. "Companies are updating their datacenters for the new wave of IT transformation coming from AI workloads and edge-to-core-to-cloud integration, adopting emerging technologies such as NAFA, or NVME-AFA, arrays to take advantage of the great workload consolidation such arrays enable."
Central and Eastern Europe, the Middle East, and Africa
Central and Eastern Europe, the Middle East, and Africa (CEMA) recorded single-digit growth in external storage spending (7.5% YoY). Similarly to Western Europe, AFAs drove the entire market up, with 60% YoY growth and a 35% increase in share.
The regional growth came on the back of flourishing growth in the Central and Eastern European (CEE) storage market (20.5% YoY), where almost all individual markets, except Central Europe, recorded growth. Performance in the Middle East and Africa (MEA) was more varied (-4.2% YoY) as the smaller countries saw a significant increase in storage shipments while the bigger countries, such as Turkey and South Africa, lagged.
"The external storage market in CEMA is strongly supported by refresh cycles in CEE and large-scale digital projects run by governments across MEA," said Marina Kostova, research manager, Storage Systems, IDC CEMA. "The boost also comes from vendors expanding their presence in the region and by the entrance of hyperscalers that did not have datacenters in the region until now."