IBM Storage Sales Chief Says Flash is Driving Value Beyond IT

Enterprise adoption of flash is accelerating due to an exponential rise in data volumes, IBM vice president of global storage sales Sebastian Krause told SiliconAngle founder John Furrier and Wikibon’s Dave Vellante at Edge 2013. He hopped into theCube between keynotes to discuss the state of the market and outline IBM’s billion dollar vision for solid-state memory.

Krause highlights that his firm’s customers are replacing their traditional disk systems with flash for a variety of reasons: to conserve space, reduce power requirements, and boost application performance. He goes on to say that IBM’s storage game plan is based on four pillars: tailoring solutions to client requirements, Storwize, addressing data intensity and, last but not least, flash.

Krause elaborates on the latter. He tells John that storage tiering has made it much easier for enterprises to integrate flash into their environments, and says that the technology is evolving so rapidly that it may very well surpass disk within three to five years. He predicts that flash will eventually replace mechanical storage altogether, with the exception of tape.

Dave changes the topic to software-defined storage, and asks Krause about IBM’s SDS roadmap. The executive breaks it down to three separate generations: the first is the SVC storage virtualization platform, the second is Storwize, and the third – which is currently still in the works – will be an application- and data-driven abstraction layer designed as an operating system.

Krause believes that software-defined storage will follow in the footsteps of other open-source trends. He expects that the ecosystem will consolidate around a single platform and augment it over time, similarly to what happened with UNIX. After elaborating, he concludes with an overview of how IBM customers are reacting to SDS, the Internet of Things and other phenomena that are disrupting the marketplace.

Check out the video below for the full highlights.