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IDC reports jump in server sales, decline in storage revenue

IDC released two surveys last week with seemingly contradictory results, but there is an underlying pattern: For now, on-premises hardware sales are dipping, while cloud sales are booming.

In its Worldwide Quarterly Server Tracker, vendor revenue in the global server market grew 19.8% year over year in the second calendar quarter of 2020 to $24.0 billion, while worldwide server shipments grew 18.4% to nearly 3.2 million units in the same time period.

In terms of server class, volume server revenue was up 22.1% to $18.7 billion; midrange server revenue declined 0.4% to about $3.3 billion; and high-end systems grew by 44.1% to $1.9 billion.

At the same time, IDC’s Worldwide Quarterly Enterprise Storage Systems Tracker found global market revenue for enterprise external OEM storage systems declined 5.0% year over year in the same time period to just under $6.3 billion.

This would seem contradictory, as servers and storage go hand in hand, and a customer of servers would need storage but not necessarily vice versa. The devil is in the details.

The top enterprise server vendors, HP Enterprise and Dell Technologies, saw declines as enterprise spending declined. HPE fell 1.8% year over year, while Dell dropped 12%. Lenovo, which does considerable sales in China, bucked the trend with 21% growth, and IBM rose 22% on the strength of new z Series mainframes.

Copyright © 2020 IDG Communications, Inc.

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