InformationWeek Analytics New Research Finds 48% of Companies Willing to Replace or Add a Data Center Networking Vendor

Nearly two-thirds have recently rearchitected or plan to rearchitect within 24 months.

Oct 11, 2010, 09:15 ET from UBM TechWeb

SAN FRANCISCO, Oct. 11 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- InformationWeek Analytics, the leading service for peer-based IT research and analysis, today announced the release of IT Pro Ranking: Data Center Networking, the first in a series of innovative research reports exploring enterprise IT's willingness to consider a wider range of suppliers.

The 468 business technology professionals who responded to our first-ever Data Center Networking Vendor Evaluation Survey revealed that HP ties Cisco and Brocade in overall performance across 10 customer-rated criteria, with other vendors close behind.

"Data center architects are considering converged infrastructures and in-rack networking rather than strictly conventional models," says report author Art Wittmann, VP & Managing Director of InformationWeek Analytics and a leading authority on data center technology. "The playing field is more level than we might have guessed."

Research Summary:

Data center perennials Cisco, on the Ethernet side, and Brocade, for SAN/Fibre Channel, are finding themselves in stiffer-than-ever competition with HP, IBM, Juniper and others, as IT organizations reevaluate their options. Nearly half the 468 respondents to our peer-based Data Center Networking Vendor Evaluation Survey are considering switching or adding data center networking vendors, and nearly two-thirds have rearchitected or plan to rearchitect with two years. Their primary motivation: capital and operational cost savings, and performance gains. The lure of advanced features and new services is secondary.


  • 48% of the 468 business tech pros we polled are willing to replace or add a data center networking vendor.
  • 65% have recently rearchitected or plan to rearchitect their data center networks within 24 months.
  • Brocade, Cisco and HP tie at No. 1 for data center networking performance, each with an overall evaluation rating of 77%, based on 10 criteria; poll respondents rate product reliability and product performance the two most important vendor evaluation criteria.
  • Virtualization support and adherence to industry standards tie as the two most important data center network features.
  • Capital and operational cost savings tie, at 64%, as the two biggest factors that would lead IT organizations to change data center networking vendors; performance gains follow, at 55%.
  • Only about one-quarter of respondents say availability of new services (25%) or features (24%) is a motivator to change data center networking vendors.

For full access to the research data, members can download now:

"We'll uncover more of this sort of unexpected information as we do more of these peer-based vendor polls," says Lorna Garey, content director of InformationWeek Analytics. "We'll keep asking the IT pros -- the people who use the gear day in and day out -- questions that get at their satisfaction with vendor pricing, service, ability to execute, ease of use and more. Then we'll analyze and present the data so people can see which suppliers rank highest in the areas that matter most to them, whether they're looking to save money or expand their technology horizons."

"Whatever the reason," she adds, "we're launching this new type of Analytics report to help our subscribers find out whose gear their peers are buying, and what decision criteria they're relying on."

InformationWeek Analytics is a subscription-based service, offering peer-based technology research. Its site currently houses more than 900 reports and briefs, and includes a dedicated area where technology professionals can access complete issues of InformationWeek Magazine. More than one hundred new reports are slated for release in 2010. InformationWeek Analytics members have access to:

  • The full InformationWeek Analytics library of reports
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  • New reports launched every week
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Art Wittmann

VP & Managing Director InformationWeek Analytics