The Storage New World Order: From Container to Open Platform | #IBMEdge


TheCUBE hosts John Furrier and Dave Vellante were joined by Sebastian Krause, VP Global Storage Sales at IBM, during our live broadcast at the first day of IBM Edge 2013.  Krause is responsible for leading and developing IBM’s world-wide Storage sales organization, and took the time to dicuss IBM’s strategy and vision for the future.

As everyone already knows, there’s a tremendous dynamic in the market place regarding the Flash Forward initiative. All customers ponder about replacing the mechanical drives with flash drives, for various reasons. Many companies are either running out of space or deciding to be more energy-efficient. In all cases, performance on the application side is extremely important for them.

IBM leads the industry in efficiency solutions, offering clients the means to run their business more effectively, delivering better services and saving money in the process. As Krause describes his job, he “creates and delivers client value through integrated solutions as well as by building a strong and sustainable Storage partner ecosystem.”

 “Open” is a cornerstone of IBM’s strategy


The trend we see nowadays in the enterprise environment is that storage will no longer be a container, but an open platform. “Open” represents a cornerstone of IBM’s strategy. This strategy is forged through thorough analysis of the clients’ needs and requirements. As expected, different customers have different needs. But even the same customer has different needs, so careful planning and meticulous analysis are the prerequisites in developing a long-term strategy.

The economical impact of not complying with a business’ critical needs can result in the loss of millions of dollars. Obviously, customers cannot afford that. As a developer, IBM’s goal is to provide Mission Critical Applications system support, ensuring that the customers are able to remain online, no matter what their needs are.

In terms of simplicity, customers want to have a platform where they can start out quickly and then develop by adding data, as their computing needs are increasing.

  • Flash improves the performance of the entire infrastructure

Is data growing so fast that the flash will become a game changer in terms of availability? Some say that the growth rate of data will soon surpass storage production. Flash is faster and less expensive than traditional means of storage. Krause believes that data explosion is not going to stop. The information volumes will increase at unprecedented rates, up to 50-70 percent per year. Handling all this data efficiently is carried out through tiering, a technology that will enable customers to use Flash almost immediately as a plugin, and also to reduce the total cost of ownership for the entire infrastructure. Nowadays Flash is everywhere — it represents a market segment by itself.

IBM’s vision for the future: software will be the big differentiator


Needless to say, technology is fast-changing and continuously evolving. The fundamental strategy of IBM is to change the perception that there needs to be a different box for different workloads. The trend is to pursue a flash-only world, but that meets the resistance of traditional storage manufacturers. In order to make the transition between these two worlds, intelligent software is required.