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Wednesday, July 13, 2016

The $7 Billion Opportunity that Legacy IT Vendors Ignored

How did the Shadow IT phenomenon disrupt an established industry, when the signs of growing discontent were so clear and obvious? Many CIOs have been challenged to offer a similar experience -- easy to use, rapid provisioning of infrastructure -- to compete with the savvy public cloud service providers.

Meanwhile, most of the traditional IT vendors seemed to have little appreciation for shifting customer needs -- delivering their compute and storage in the same old way, regardless of the implications.

Not being oblivious to emerging market demand, new entrants seized the opportunity by creating a better way. As a result, the continued adoption of hyper-converged platforms has invigorated the waning data center IT infrastructure market.

But deployment expansion reveals even more challenges ahead that legacy vendors must address to preserve sales momentum -- as the market quickly departs from complex, stand-alone hardware deployments.

Hyperconverged Systems Market Development

According to the latest worldwide market study by Technology Business Research (TBR), the need for agile, cost-effective and easily managed infrastructure will drive a 50 percent CAGR from 2015 to 2020 for hyperconverged platforms, leading to a nearly $7 billion market by 2020.

"As some customers in mid-sized organizations expand their hyperconverged footprint, they are grappling with deployment steps that actually take more time than deployment of traditional, stand-alone infrastructure," said Christian Perry, principal analyst at TBR.

According to the TBR assessment, these include configuration, optimization and even the purchase itself. Considering that hyperconverged is inherently designed to simplify IT, successful vendors must ensure customer expectations match reality for deployment complexity.

Company-wide perceptions of hyperconverged platform deployments can differ from those of traditional infrastructure due to the expectations of business leaders for a seamless transition to the new technology.

Further, lines of business within organizations are sharply focused on the benefits that hyperconverged platforms can deliver post-deployment, including cost reduction and higher IT production levels.

Evolution of Data Center Transformation

TBR analysts believe that this focus leads to an anticipation that amplifies the urgency around deployments and pressures IT organizations to show quick time to value with their new investments in hyperconverged technologies.

New architectures often encounter growing pains as customer adoption expands. However, working on-site with customers through demonstrations, trial deployments and training throughout the purchase and deployment process will help vendors prevent customer frustration as they adjust to their new technology.

This is critical, because research shows satisfaction is strong once the new architecture is up and running. The transition of the data center will continue alone this path. Legacy IT vendors must adapt, or they'll become irrelevant.