IBM Unveils 4 Improved Storwize System Models
The new rack-mounted storage devices, including the all-flash Storwize V5100F and V5100, and the Storwize V5010E and Storwize V5030E models, are faster than the older ones they replace, adding new capabilities for customers, Eric Herzog, vice president of product marketing and management for IBM Storage Systems, told Channel Futures.
The Storwize V5100F and V5100 combine IBM FlashCore technology with non-volatile memory express (NVMe) protocols to help customers support demanding AI and analytics applications, while the Storwize V5010E and Storwize V5030E models provide enterprise-class functionality, availability and reliability in an easy-to-manage entry-level systems, according to IBM.
All four new storage systems come pre-loaded with IBM Spectrum Virtualize for Public Cloud software, which previously had to be ordered separately, to make it easier for companies to move data between on-premises and the public cloud. IBM Spectrum Virtualize for Public Cloud can now be deployed on Amazon Web Services (AWS), as well as on the IBM Cloud, giving users additional flexibility and choice.
The four new storage systems are delivered 100% through the channel, said Herzog.
“From a partner perspective, prior to this launch they would order the array and IBM Spectrum software separately,” Herzog said. “Now the software is embedded in the part number. It saves time and makes it easier. Now they don’t have to buy it separately and install it.”
The IBM Storwize devices are aimed at businesses of all sizes, from SMBs to enterprises.
“They are bringing NVMe down-market” to better serve customers,” Herzog added.
The new V5100 series devices will start shipping at the end of May, while the V5000 models will ship by late April.
Michael Adams, director of storage and professional services for Lighthouse Computer Services, a premier IBM business partner and VAR, told Channel Futures that the latest Storwize devices will offer his customers a TCO and better performance, while also giving them the ability to adopt NVMe capabilities within their infrastructure.
“I really like the fact that Storwize is a channel-only product,” he said. “That sets clear direction for IBM and us, and customers will benefit from the new models as well.”
Lighthouse already is planning to use the new storage devices for customers to provide technical refreshes for production data, disk repositories for backup solutions and for components for internal private cloud architectures, he said.
Other useful features include data reduction (compression and dedupe) as well as integrated replication for business continuity, said Adams.
“Also, I really like that these new models have the ability to integrate into the container world of Docker, Kubernetes [and so on],” he said.
Rob Enderle, principal analyst with Enderle Group, said the new Storwize offerings are well directed at problems customers face in their IT systems.
“It starts with a solid expression of customer pain points and then showcases how these new IBM products effectively address them,” said Enderle. “All products should be defined by current and anticipated customer needs, something vendors often forget, and IBM clearly didn’t forget that here. This should result in the offerings being well received.”
Enderle said that based on his observations of the storage marketplace that the new Storwize devices should be very helpful to both IBM’s channel and its customers. The devices appear to advance specifically by using NVMe to significantly improve performance and value, he added.
“IBM is pointing a lot of resources at gaining market share in the storage space and that means you’ll see them be very aggressive with regard to both technology and prices,” said Enderle. “This suggests they should be on the bid list for anyone looking to upgrade their storage infrastructure because, even if they don’t win, they’ll drive overall better values and prices into the process.”