The title of this blog post is a quote indigenous the so late Steve Jobs. In highly competitive and mature markets, this quote is very a propos. In the enterprise infrastructure market, ns am frequently asked around the long term rivalry in between EMC and also NetApp.

You are watching: Innovation distinguishes between a leader and a follower.

On February 13, 2013,NetAppvery quiet acquiredionGrid, a tiny privately held agency that brings companies Dropbox-like capabilities come the iPad specifically. As soon as I thought around this acquisition, I immediately thought of EMC’s “EMC enterprise Online paper Sharing service from Syncplicity with On-Premise storage Options”. The product to be made available through an announcement on January 15, 2013, virtually a month to the day previously than NetApp"s acquisition of ionGrid.


For companies favor NetApp, being checked out to it is in reactionary deserve to be a negative thing. That conjures up perceptions of a lack of innovation, a level the desperation come be checked out to it is in on equal ground v its competitor (cementing the awareness of being second best). In fact, this is no the first time the NetApp has actually trailed EMC on one of two people announcing or distribution technology. Here are some examples:

Neuralytix research shows that NetApp to be the clean front-runner in terms ofdeliveringcompression capabilities to companies storage systems, yet it organized off that announcement until October 1, 2010, over a month after EMC announced itsintentto deliver compression to the VNX platform; v respects come scale-out NAS, NetApp was seven to eight years late (depending on just how one counts the dates) through delivering scale-out capabilities to its platform. In the meantime, EMC acquried Isilon two years prior to NetApp do general availability of DataONTAP 8 with cluster mode; allowing EMC to build its Isilon unit right into a department that delivered $1B run rate in revenue;

NetApp is one outright modern technology leader. That DataONTAP operating mechanism should be lauded and applauded; however it is frequently put under by its rivals as being archaic and also without recent innovation. The an obstacle I see v NetApp, is that it has consistently to be let down as result of its incapacity to evangelize that is achievements, and also most important its technology leadership.

It has over-invested in ideas such together the FlexPod referral architecture, which eventually is not an integrated solution (such as those available by Dell, EMC, HP, IBM and Oracle). Instead, the is a highly-tested set of recommendations for customers to acquire modern technology from three disparate suppliers – NetApp, Cisco and also VMware, and also three separate organization contracts indigenous each respective vendor.

NetApp’s focus on FlexPod is an attempt to demonstrate that it has actually a an ext powerful grip end Cisco andVMwarethan EMC. The former, having a joint-venture companion of EMC, in VCE Corporation, that has reached (or really close come reaching) a $1B run rate in revenue; and also the latter, a agency in which EMC has a far-ranging majority ownership.

I believe that NetApp needs to invest in demonstrating come the industry how it has actually taken its market share from low single digits to the teens, no by gift an also-ran, or a "me too" company. Rather it should demonstrate that the maturation of the agency and the successes it has accomplished is a result of gift a technology leader and a visionary company.

NetApp, present that your invention is truly leading the market to brand-new heights, not following others to acquire there.

Disclaimer:

My firm and I on regular basis consult and also advise the vendors. EMC and NetApp have actually both received input native Neuralytix and also me.

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I to be the founder and Managing manager of Neuralytix, Inc. My company and I are industry experts that cover the data and information industry. In particular, us cover the framework that support the ability to get insight native data and information. V that insight, enterprises are able to then use intuition and experience to revolve that into company value and also innovation. Previously I was a VP in ~ IDC where I managed the worldwide Big Data and worldwide storage mechanism research. We advise both that users and IT vendors. In this blog, I will be writing around the experience and advice we impart to our clients.