Converged systems industry breaches $10 billion barrier

Revenue for converged systems has breached the $10 billion dollar barrier over the last 12 months, according to experts at analyst firm IDC.

Converged systems are hardware subsystems that integrate and tightly couple various types of IT infrastructure such as compute, storage, network and software into a single package for IT infrastructure management, automation and orchestration.

They are often used as a first step towards a software defined network (SDN) in a data centre as web and mobile applications - which benefit from SDN - can be hosted on these converged systems without any disruption to the traditional infrastructure.

A converged infrastructure addresses the problem of siloed architectures and IT sprawl by pooling and sharing IT resources. Rather than dedicating a set of resources to a particular computing technology, application or line of business, converged infrastructure creates a pool of virtualised servers, storage and networking capacity that is shared by multiple applications and lines of business.

IDC counts three types of converged infrastructure, starting with integrated systems like those offered by Oracle and VCE with everything in the box ready to go. VCE leads that market with quarterly revenue of $483m and 27.8 per cent of the market. HP and Oracle trail, on 22.5 per cent and 21.3 per cent market share respectively.

The second category, which IDC tracks is certified reference systems, a field in which the Cisco/NetApp FlexPods come out on top with 45 per cent share ahead of EMC's efforts and those of Hitachi Data Systems.

The third category is hyperconverged systems that “provide all compute and storage functions through the same server-based resources.” Such systems have grabbed just under 11 per cent of the converged systems market.

The firm's not yet breaking out the winners in this category, but it's hard to see it resisting for long if one looks at the ever-increasing revenues for hyperconverged kit.