HP To Phase Out StorageTek Tape Libraries, Keep Quantum


Part of its product rationalization strategy resulting from the merger


HP is planning to phase out part of its enterprise-class tape arrays as a result of its acquisition of Compaq. And the loser appears to be StorageTek.

The old HP resold enterprise-class libraries manufactured by StorageTek, while the old Compaq sold Quantum's enterprise libraries. Now, however, HP will focus on the line of Quantum libraries it acquired with Compaq, said Adrian Jones, vice president of worldwide OEM sales for Quantum.

An HP official confirmed that the company will phase out its StorageTek-made HP 10/180 (StorageTek model L180) and HP 20/700 (StorageTek model L700) arrays over the next three months.

The company will continue to support the StorageTek libraries with new tape drives through the end of 2003, and continue to offer tech support for individual libraries for up to five years after the date of their sale to corporate clients, the official said.

Frank Harbist, general manager of nearline storage for HP's Network Storage Solutions, said in an e-mail to CRN, "Throughout the integration planning process for the new HP, we evaluated each of our overlapping products based on how they met customer needs, how they helped HP meet its business objectives, and how they fit strategically into our overall product and solutions offering. Specific items [we looked at included features, quality, market share, portfolio consistency and pricing, all of which were analyzed both backward-looking and forward-looking. Our overriding objective in all this was customer satisfaction through performance, reliability and value. At this point in time, the (Quantum) ESL products meet these criteria best."

A StorageTek official confirmed the company has been notified by HP that HP will no longer work with the L180 and L700. The official said StorageTek was disappointed with the decision, but is positioned to quickly rebound with a full line of tape arrays supporting T9840 and T9940 tape drives from StorageTek, as well as LTO and DLT drives.

The StorageTek official also said the company will work with both its direct and indirect sales channels to pursue continuing opportunities with HP's enterprise tape library customers.