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"So why didn't NetApp buy a developer instead of developing all flash storage in-house?" Woodall said. "They probably feel they have the time to develop their own technology. EMC bought XtremIO, but that company had no products when EMC bought it. It probably would have been better for EMC to have bought someone with products available."
It was important for NetApp to start talking about FlashRay even though actual solutions based on the architecture are still not yet available, Woodall said.
"EMC goes out talking about something a year out," he said. "With NetApp, we never know what they're doing in advance. FlashRay is core NetApp innovation from the ground up. I'm looking forward to this."