NetApp Goes Down Market with Entry-Level, All-Flash Storage
NetApp, in its drive to reach new customers and expand within existing accounts, on Thursday revealed that will deliver its first entry-level, all-flash storage system aimed at small businesses with high I/O workload requirements.
NetApp claims the new rack mountable AFF C190 system, configurable with up to 24 SSDs, includes the ONTAP data management platform and will deliver 10 times faster application response time than its hybrid counterparts for less than $25,000.
The new system, which supports connectivity to public cloud services, comes a week after Microsoft said that its first-party Azure NetApp Files cloud service is now available. Together they promise to pair well for partners looking to help small businesses and those with limited budgets deploy hybrid architectures based on the NetApp Data Fabric that otherwise couldn’t afford the more costly all-flash arrays, which can start upward of $100,000.
NetApp’s C190, set to ship July 1, also seeks to broaden the company’s addressable market, following last month’s disappointing fourth quarter earnings report, which fell short of analyst earnings and revenue estimates, and included lowered guidance for the current quarter. The move down market builds on NetApp’s promise to offer partners more opportunities through its streamlined Unified Partner Program, as reported last month.
To that point, Jeff McCullough, NetApp’s VP of Americas partner sales, said the company developed the C190 around the notion that the channel can easily sell and deploy it. The C190 fills a significant gap in NetApp’s portfolio — small businesses with high-performance needs to run modern application workloads but with limited budgets, McCullough acknowledged in an interview.
“We really didn’t participate in the sub-$25,000 space, but now we have an all-flash product that is full-featured, easily configurable at well below $25,000, with great front-end margin,” he said. “A partner can go sell this, be profitable and compete in this segment that we really haven’t gone after aggressively.”
Asked how much margin, McCullough emphasized NetApp doesn’t dictate that but indicated that the “high-teens or low 20-point range” is within reach, depending on the attached services a partner offers.
McCullough noted that the company is offering the C190 as Express Packs, NetApp’s preconfigured solutions.
“It’s it’s pre-priced and pre-discounted,” he said. “When a partner registers a deal, all of the pricing is done up front for them. They don’t need to work with anybody from NetApp to get additional discounts. Everything is put into their hands. Margin is going to vary based on the competitive situation and a partner’s ability to really attach and drive value both in terms of the product, but more importantly in terms of what they deliver an offer to the customer in terms of services and support capability.”
The C190 is based on the complete NetApp ONTAP platform offered in its enterprise systems including the company’s FabricPool automated data tiering to the public cloud, SnapMirror asynchronous replication to NetApp Cloud Volumes ONTAP, data-at-rest volume encryption, NetApp Data Availability Services, FlexClone to create instant virtual copies of files, LUNs and volumes, and the company’s FlexVol inline deduplication inline compression, inline compaction and thin provisioning capability (see more C190 specs here).
The new lower-end system with the ONTAP stack included will open new doors for those who …