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Top vendors benefited from impressive growth in the disk storage systems market, with EMC maintaining its top position in the external disk storage systems market. Worldwide external disk storage systems factory revenues posted year-over-year growth of 17.1 percent, totaling $5.0 billion, in the first quarter of 2010 (1Q10), according to a report from the International Data Corporation (IDC) Worldwide Quarterly Disk Storage Systems Tracker. For the quarter, the total disk storage systems market grew to $6.7 billion in revenues, representing 18.8 percent growth from the prior year’s first quarter.

After EMC, which led the market with 24.6 percent revenue share in the first quarter, was followed by IBM and NetApp in what IDC termed a “statistical tie” for second with 11.7 percent and 11.1 percent market share, respectively. HP and Dell ended in the fourth position in a statistical tie with 10.2 percent and 10.1 percent market share, respectively. Total disk storage systems capacity shipped reach 3,397 petabytes, growing 55.2 percent year over year, the report noted.

"The worldwide disk storage systems market is off to a strong start in Q1 2010, based on year-over-year growth, although annual comparisons are less indicative of market performance given the 2009 economic crisis," said Natalya Yezhkova, a research manager for storage systems at IDC. "As such, sequential comparisons can provide more information on a market recovery. Although the market declined in Q1 2010 compared to Q4 2009, the decline was lower than usual. This is a positive sign, suggesting increased storage budgets and continued demand for storage solutions."

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IDC reported the total open networked disk storage market (Network Attached Storage (NAS) combined with Open/iSCSI SAN) grew 26.3 percent year-over-year in the first quarter to $4.0 billion in revenues. EMC continues to hold the top position in the total open networked storage market with 28.7 percent revenue share, followed by NetApp with 13.7 percent revenue share, the report noted. The NAS market grew 44.6 percent year-over-year, led by EMC with 45.1 percent revenue share and followed by NetApp with 26.9 percent share.

"The first quarter saw a resurgence in previously declining segments," added IDC’s senior research analyst for storage systems Liz Conner. "In Q1 and the prior quarter, vendors introduced higher-end storage systems aimed at specific use cases such as data deduplication, storage tiering, and database storage. The high demand for storage in these use areas, coupled with the improving economic conditions, have led to 16.2 percent year-over-year growth in the high end segment (PB $250K+)."