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Thu 31 Aug 2006 08:00 PM

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Data bank


Disk-based data protection demand set to strengthen

Disk-based data protection, which is expected to reach US$8 billion in user IT spending in 2006, is poised to generate more than $50 billion in software and hardware purchases through 2010, a new IDC study reveals.

Fueled by increasing regulatory compliance, business continuity, and fast recovery, the disk-based data protection market will continue to expand at a rate two to three times faster than the overall storage market.

"We have seldom seen so much unmet pent-up demand for a market that is already so large," says Robert Gray, research vice president, Worldwide Storage Systems at IDC.

"Latent demand is also high in the SMB market. However, traditional storage solutions are totally inadequate to meet current and future demand, creating significant opportunities for innovative suppliers."

"Users want a unified solution approach to data protection, security, and data management, supporting an orientation toward simplicity and integration," added Laura DuBois, research director, Storage Software at IDC. "Storage solution suppliers must build a broad ecosystem of data protection functions through innovation, acquisition or partnership, and collaboration."

The new IDC multiclient study is entitled 'Disk-based Data Protection - 2006'.Lucrative VPN and managed security services markets forecast to reach US$37 billion in 2009

The VPN services market took in a whopping US$23 billion in 2005 and is expected to grow another 22% to hit $29 billion in 2009.

Meanwhile, the managed security services market grew to nearly $5 billion in 2005 and is forecast to jump 68% to $8 billion in 2009.

Both markets are increasingly lucrative due to increased worldwide deployment of MPLS and the complexity of deploying VPN and security solutions, says Infonetics Research in its latest market size and forecast report, VPN and Security Services.

"The number and variety of attacks affecting most organisations is increasing at an alarming rate, and the technologies needed to effectively combat all of the possible attacks are simply too difficult for many organisations to deploy themselves," says Jeff Wilson, principal analyst for VPNs and security at Infonetics Research. "In particular, attacks aimed at specific types of content (from business applications like Oracle and SAP to instant messenger traffic) are wreaking havoc on organisations-and not just big companies; companies of all sizes are being affected."

The report finds that every year until 2009, IPSec revenue will decline, while MPLS, MPLS/IPSec, and SSL revenue will rise.

Wireless phones poised to make profitable connection with EMEA enterprises

Revenues from Wi-Fi phones more than doubled between 2004 and 2005, a pattern that is set to continue for the next three years, analysts have said.

Sales of Wi-Fi phones generated US$125.5 million in 2005, an increase of 116% on the previous year, according to a report by Infonetics Research. The research and consulting firm predicted that revenue will double or even triple each year until 2009, when the worldwide market in Wifi phones is set to reach $3.7bn.

"Single-mode Wi-Fi VOIP handsets continue to penetrate the enterprise market, and with D-Link, Linksys, and NETGEAR all launching products, we expect increasing adoption in the consumer market, too," said Richard Webb, directing wireless analyst with Infonetics Research. "But the real growth will come from dual-mode Wi-Fi/cellular handsets."

Currently, 49% of dual-mode Wi-Fi/cellular handset revenue came from Asia Pacific, with 27% from North America and 22% from Europe, the Middle East and Africa, but this is set to change by 2009, when much more revenue will be generated in EMEA.

SpectraLink led the overall Wi-Fi phone revenue market in 2005, followed by Cisco and Motorola.

Biggest pain points in storage management revealed

A white paper on key storage management trends that were highlighted in a recent Ziff Davis Media survey of 568 enterprise professionals, performed on behalf of Datalink, says that the pressure on IT managers to ensure the security of their company's data is increasing. This follows business managers and board members becoming more sensitive to the risks of data theft, and to the financial or even legal penalties of noncompliance with information security laws and regulations.

The report says that IT leaders have a variety of challenges (see chart below), which have a direct impact on storage security planning. "Successful storage managers will proactively identify the most critical security risks facing their storage assets and implement the technologies and processes needed to mitigate those threats," it says.

Addressing this challenge will rapidly become a standard "best practice" that is expected of storage administrators in every industry.

Through the proper use of technologies such as authentication, access control and encryption, security-aware storage managers will help assure the success of their organisations as well as their own careers.

IT managers make most of servers to go virtual

The number of virtual machines that IT managers fit in a single server depends on two parameters: how beefy the physical server is, and how much demand is generated by each application running in the virtual machines, according to a study by Nemertes Research.

The company found in its upcoming research benchmark on next-generation data centres that companies usually start with a very high ratio of about 15:1 or more in the first year of virtualisation adoption.

This represents the "low-hanging fruit," applications that demand between 5% and 10% of the average server CPU, it says. After one year, companies have gained enough experience to tackle more demanding servers and the ratio drops to 8:1. By the third year, the ratio stabilises to an even lower 3:1.

In the drive to consolidate servers, this is a good strategy: start with those that are grossly under-utilised and consolidate them into a densely packed VM environment, says Nemertes, adding that gradually, as IT develops expertise with virtual machines, data-centre managers can start tackling more demanding and critical applications.

UAE on course to become knowledge economy, ahead of worldwide average

The United Arab Emirates is on course to become a knowledge-based economy, according to a new report from Madar Research which backs up the World Bank's similar recent findings.

Madar has just published the UAE Knowledge Economy 2006, an overview of where the seven Emirates stand in terms of their institutional, infrastructural and human resources components.

Among the topics covered by the report are economic performance indicators, information society infrastructure, innovation systems, education systems, economic incentive regime, e-government, e-learning, e-commerce, ICT use in the financial sector, ICT market and business environment and lifestyle. It also looks at socio-economic factors.

The World Bank's Knowledge Economy Index for Q1 2006 listed the UAE as the top-rated Arab country with a score of 5.94 for its knowledge economy, based on measures such as information infrastructure and innovation. Kuwait was next on 5.52, followed by Bahrain with a score of 5.19.

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