Gartner Research

Market Trends: Software-Defined Infrastructure — Who Can Benefit?

Published: 14 June 2017

ID: G00323878

Analyst(s): John Morency , Scot MacLellan


The shift to software-defined infrastructure will impact vendors across many data center categories. Technology business unit leaders can use this research to make the right choices for their business in this evolving market.

Table Of Contents


Market Trend

  • SDI Is Both a Threat and Opportunity, to Different Classes of Technology Providers
  • Market Structure Trend
    • Data Center Hardware Suppliers Can Either Fight in the Volume (Commodity) Business or Forge Links With Software Infrastructure
    • HCIS Providers Can Continue Current Growth If They Focus on Ease-of-Use and Improve Horizontal Scalability
    • HCI Software Providers Can Be Successful With Technically Savvy Buyers Seeking a Cost-Optimized SDDC Solution
    • Vertical SDI Software Vendors Can Be Successful With Large Organizations and With Mode 1 Buyers, and by Focusing on the Less Mature SDI Domains Where No Leaders Have Yet Emerged
    • Incumbent Infrastructure Software Vendors Can Renew Their Existing Customer Base and Compete Against Traditional Competitors Through Accelerated Evolution
  • Buyer Trend
    • Hyperscale Service Providers Lead the Way in Software-Defined, but the Only System Market Opportunity Is for Commodity Technology
    • xSPs Will Aggressively Adopt a Software-Defined Approach, Looking for Cost-Efficiencies
    • Enterprise Buyers Are Moving to SDI in Small Bite-Size Tactical Steps
    • The Midmarket Opportunity Is Slight for SDI in General, but HCIS Will Prove Attractive

Vendors to Watch

  • SDI-Inspired Hardware
  • HCIS
  • Hyperconverged Software Providers
  • SDI Vendors
  • Incumbent Infrastructure Software Provider

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