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Software-Defined Infrastructure Spending on the Rise

VMware has the lion's share of the market, according to a 451 Research survey.

Enterprises are increasingly warming to the idea of adding software-defined infrastructure to their datacenters, according to a new report from analyst firm 451 Research.

The survey shows that 67 percent of large organizations are going to increase spending on software-defined infrastructure (SDI) this year, which will result on a total of 14.4 percent more spent. Despite those figures, however, only about a fifth of enterprises are using any SDI at all, showing that there's still a long way to go.

Of the 79 percent of non-SDI shops, two key hurdles are keeping it at bay: low maturity of SDI products and lack of staff expertise. "To achieve successful implementation, decision-makers should first conduct an audit of their internal skills and look to fill any gaps. Meanwhile, vendors should aim to play a more proactive role in communicating requirements and presenting case studies to help overcome these barriers," 451 Research senior analyst Nikolay Yamakawa said in a press release.

The SDI implementers point to "improved agility and flexibility" as the main benefits they've realized. And even though a low percentage of businesses are using SDI, those who have used it are seeing enough positives that they're increasing rather than decreasing their budget for it. That works out to a 37.4 percent increase in software-defined networking (SDN), and a 26.9 percent increase in software-defined storage (SDS). Overall, just 3 percent are cutting back on SDI spending.

VMware dominates the SDI space, with 66.3 percent of respondents using it. VMware has gone the furthest in the industry toward providing the tools and technologies for an all-SDI infrastructure, using its own acronym -- software-defined datacenter, or SDDC -- for its collection of offerings. In second and third place, respectively, are Cisco (39.2 percent) and Microsoft (28.1) percent.

The survey, according to 451 Research, was based on responses from more than 900 IT professionals globally.

About the Author

Keith Ward is the editor in chief of Virtualization & Cloud Review. Follow him on Twitter @VirtReviewKeith.

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