Solution providers are hedging their bets for near-term sales growth of storage hardware and software, according to CRN research data. But even so, sales expectations remain considerably stronger in the storage market than in other major hardware and software categories.
A slightly higher percentage of solution providers said they expected overall storage sales growth of at least 6 percent in the short term in June vs. February. But the percentage of solution providers that said they expected sales to decline at least 6 percent nearly doubled. This trend extends to storage subcategories as well.
Despite the added caution on the part of solution providers, the outlook for storage remains relatively bright, reflecting not only the routine need for storage among businesses but heightened concerns for data storage and safety in the wake of the Sept. 11 attacks.
In June, for example, 52 percent of solution providers were expecting storage sales growth of at least 6 percent in the July-to-September period. This was the highest percentage among the eight hardware and software categories CRN regularly surveys and a full 15 percentage points above the figure for the next-highest category, networking hardware.