Following a decline in 2013, the global storage area network equipment (SAN) market grew 3% in 2014, to $2,5-billion, as demand returns for equipment built to handle unprecedented levels of server-to-storage-array data center traffic.
Infonetics’ fourth quarter 2014 and year-end “SAN and Converged Data Centre Network Equipment” report tracks SAN Fibre Channel switches and host bus adapters (HBAs), converged data center network adapters and switch ports-in-use for storage.

“We expect to see adapters with 2x25GE ports begin shipping this year, which will push the performance envelope in the data center, ushering in the next wave of cloud computing. The introduction of a new 25/100GE architecture in the data center will complement existing 10/40GE architectures, giving cloud service providers a clear migration path,” says Dr Cliff Grossner, research director for data center, cloud and SDN at Infonetics Research.

“QLogic recently demonstrated 25GE and 100GE interoperability with Broadcom’s StrataXGS Tomahawk-based switch,” Grossner says.

In 4Q14, the worldwide storage area network market, including Fibre Channel switches and host bus adapters, totaled $669-million, a sequential uptick of 2%.

Demand for 16G and high-performance requirements for solid-state drive (SSD) storage continues to drive the Fibre Channel SAN market higher.

Globally, converged network adapter (CNA) revenue grew 8% in 2014 from 2013, but declined 7% in 4Q14 from 3Q14.
SAN and CNA vendors are anticipating significant revenue growth as a result of a server refresh cycle driven by Intel’s server ASIC, code named Grantley.
Brocade is the unchallenged leader in the SAN switch and adapter market, and Intel heads up the converged adapter market.