What is the future of the storage industry?

(If you’re already bored and don’t want to read on, the short answer is … find out by watching SolidFire Founder Dave Wright on June 2 at 8:30 a.m. MST live from SolidFire Analyst Day in Boulder, Colorado. Go here to add to your calendar.)


Some would have you believe that there isn’t a future for storage, and everything that everyone stores will move to AWS and Google. While there is no doubt that hyperscale clouds have brought amazing innovation and even entirely new business models, it is also clear that private and hosted data centers remain the places that most organisations will keep the bulk of their data, adding a hybrid or multi-cloud strategy where that results in a competitive advantage.


Digital disruption is placing impossible demands on traditional IT

Digital disruption is affecting every industry. This is the reason Gartner has been advocating a bi-modal IT strategy for the past couple of years. They continue to believe organisations will fail by following a traditional approach to next generation applications and service delivery.

The same is true for storage. Next generation applications and developers require IT that provisions instantly and data centers that do everything automatically. All-flash storage with software that guarantees performance and that can scale effortlessly with total automation is the only way to make this happen.

The future is closer than you think

We have been talking about many of these trends: digital disruption, bi-modal IT, 3rd platform, cloud, and flash for several years. For me, there is no doubt that these trends are accelerating and changing our industry for good. When NetApp announced the SolidFire acquisition, Dave Wright wrote about the Beginning of the End of the All-flash Array Market. For many more traditional IT folk, it probably feels like the shift to flash just started … presumably the same people that think OpenStack is immature (7,800 people at the last summit!), containers can be ignored, DevOps doesn’t matter, and automation is just something that is going to take their job.

My colleague Tim Pitcher (VP International, SolidFire, 2nd employee outside the U.S.) has been saying for the past few years that 2016 will be the year we see the biggest changes in the storage industry for decades. He might just be right!

SolidFire Analyst Day: Bring on the Future

On June 2nd, the SolidFire team will have the pleasure of hosting the great and good of the worldwide analyst and influencer community at our 3rd annual SolidFire Analyst Day in Boulder, Colorado. We like to be open, so Dave Wright’s keynote presentation from the event will be broadcast live. Please join us. He will share his thoughts on the future of the storage industry, make some exciting new product and commercial announcements, as well as discuss why NetApp + SolidFire has the power to change the future of the entire storage industry.

Add this event to your calendar today.




John Rollason

John Rollason is Senior Director, Product & Solutions Marketing, Next Generation Data Center at NetApp. In this role, John is responsible for NetApp’s Next Generation Data Center marketing strategy. He works closely, not only with customers, partners, analysts and media, but also with leadership, sales, technical and product teams worldwide.

Prior to this role John was Marketing Director for SolidFire, acquired by NetApp in 2016, and responsible for global marketing strategy and delivery for the NetApp SolidFire Business Unit. John joined SolidFire in 2014.

Before joining SolidFire, John spent over nine years at NetApp, mainly in the role of Director, Product, Solutions & Alliances Marketing EMEA. Prior to NetApp, John worked for eight years at Nortel in a variety of positions in System Engineering, Business Development and Product Marketing.

John has spoken regularly at industry events for many years and attended The University of Newcastle-upon-Tyne gaining an M. Eng (Hons) in Electrical and Electronic Engineering. He is a Member of the Institution of Engineering & Technology.

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