Thursday, 27 March 2008

Hitachi and Hardware II

After my last post I think I should have been a little more specific. Whist I'm aware HDS is owned by Hitachi, I pointed out that HDS is effectively a reseller for their hardware. In my experience, HDS take the hardware as Hitachi deliver/design it. I've not seen a huge feedback loop where hardware futures are developed with HDS (although HDS do seem to feed back a lot of software requirements).

My point was, HDS don't purchase companies as they are just Hitachi's reseller and Hitachi don't purchase at all. Either way, whether Hitachi or HDS, the company needs an obvious strategy.

Wednesday, 26 March 2008

HDS and Hardware

I’m away on holiday at the moment (which is a blessed relief, looking at the Easter weather in the UK, no pun intended) however catching up with some emails I noticed the supposed post on Storagezilla’s site that IBM are to purchase Diligent.

I nearly worked for the UK arm of Diligent many years ago when they were getting started, but that’s another story. What struck me about the comments ‘zilla made with reference to IBM, Moshe and IBM’s acquisitive streak was the predicament HDS finds itself in.

HDS traditionally partners and doesn’t purchase companies however they don’t own their underlying hardware – the product is produced by Hitachi and resold by HDS and HP. The recent IBM acquisitions and EMC’s relentless purchase of anyone with a storage product mean HDS is falling behind the game. They currently have 2 product lines; enterprise hardware and modular hardware, neither of which they own. With IBM and EMC making inroads into acquiring more hardware and software tools to build entire solutions, how could HDS hope to compete going forward?

I’m not sure if HDS have a relationship with Hitachi which guarantees them access to storage products and a say in product design, however if they don’t then I can’t see how they will compete with the big boys. HDS need to look to acquire technology and start producing integrated solutions pretty quickly or they are going to get squeezed out of what looks to be an increasingly competitive and solutions’ based market.

Oh, one other little footnote; my 10-year old son bought a iPod Touch at the airport and fortunately for him I’d brought my laptop with me. Unfortunately, he didn’t understand why I couldn’t get online and download iTunes to configure his new toy while flying along at 35,000 feet…