Data Centre Spend To Surpass Pre-Downturn Level


Worldwide data centre hardware spending for 2011 is set to rise 12.7 percent from 2010, says Gartner

Who says the future of IT is all in software? All software has to run on some sort of processor, physical or virtual, and all those have to run on something you can see and touch. And with the continuing deluge of data pouring into servers and storage arrays, there is no shortage of processors happening anytime soon.

Thus, IT hardware sales are going nowhere but up and to the right. Gartner has some new numbers that back up this trend.

Return to 2008 levels

The industry researcher is projecting that worldwide data centre hardware spending will reach $98.9 billion (£62bn) by the end of calendar year 2011, up 12.7 percent from $87.8 billion in 2010, according to a report it published on 13 October. Data centre hardware spending is forecast to total $106.4 billion in 2012 and surpass $126.2 billion in 2015.

Data centre hardware spending includes servers, storage and enterprise data centre networking equipment.

“Worldwide data centre hardware spending will finally reach and surpass 2008 levels,” said Jon Hardcastle, research director at Gartner. “Growth in emerging regions – particularly Brazil, Russia, India and China (the BRIC countries) – is balanced by continued weakness relative to pre-downturn levels in Japan and Western Europe.”

Storage is the main driver for growth, Hardcastle said. “Although only a quarter of data centre hardware spending is on storage, almost half of the growth in spending will be from the storage market,” he said.

The largest-sized category of data centres (data centres with more than 500 racks of equipment) will increase its share of spending from 20 percent in 2010 to 26 percent in 2015, driven by the cloud and the shift from internal data centre provision to external, Gartner said.

In 2010, 2 percent of data centres contained 52 percent of total data centre floor space and accounted for 63 percent of data centre hardware spending. In 2015, 2 percent of data centres will contain 60 percent of data centre floor space and account for 71 percent of data centre hardware spending, the researcher said.

Additional information is available in the Gartner report “Forecast: Data Centres, Worldwide, 2010-2015.”

Peter Sondergaard, senior vice president and global head of research at Gartner, will provide the latest outlook for the IT industry during the opening keynote at Gartner Symposium/ITxpo in Orlando, Florida, on Monday, 17 October.

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