IBM’s acquisition today of Texas Memory Systems (TMS) is more proof that customer data demands will fuel a new wave of flash technologies to replace the hard drive systems that have dominated the market for the past 30 years.
The acquisition points to a number of shifts in the flash market. Alliances are changing, private companies face threats from publicly traded companies and the giants themselves now have to prove they have the chops to compete with the feisty startups.
In particular, eyes are on Fusion-io, which has had a cozy relationship with IBM. But now Texas Memory is IBM’s new darling so it raises questions about the impacts on the market.
Fusion-io has been tearing up the flash market with its PCI-flash card technology. IBM has made it the centerpiece of its high-end solid state storage offerings. Texas Memory competes with its RamSan family of caching cards. But TMS is privately held and that makes it difficult to compete with Fusion-io, which had its IPO last year and now has revenues approaching $700 million.
With that in mind, here are five considerations, based upon rumbles in the market and research I received from investment firm Sterns-Agee, which follows the flash market and Fusion-io:
The demand for SSD is a huge shift and proof that the storage and service providers will go through a major overhaul of their infrastructure to keep up with the massive scale that we will see as almost everything we can imagine begins to generate data of some kind.
There are billions, if not trillions at stake here. This should be a fun one to watch.
Texas Memory Systems, Inc. (TMS) is a privately-held 34-year leader of the enterprise data storage and digital signal processing industries. Since 1978, TMS has specifically focused on high bandwidth, low latency enterprise data storage and digital signal processing systems. The primary feature of TMS products has always been very high performance, and TMS achieves this performance without resorting to overly complex circuitry, overburdened software designs or unwieldy protocols. This emphasis on design and architectural simplicity allows TMS to deliver...