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The world storage market shrank by nearly 4% in the second quarter, a sign that the troubled sector has not yet turned toward recovery.

According to market researcher IDC, worldwide disk storage factory revenues dropped 3.9% year over year to $4.73 billion. There was growth in North America, but sales in Asia, particularly Japan, declined significantly. "The results are decidedly mixed, providing no indication of a near-term global recovery in the disk storage systems market," said John McArthur, IDC's vice president of storage research.

Hewlett Packard's

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storage revenues were down slightly to $1.26 billion, but the Palo Alto, Calif., company remained the sector leader by a wide margin with an overall share of 25.7%.

IBM

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and

EMC

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(EMC)

followed, with shares of 20.2% and 12.7% respectively. IBM's storage revenue was $957 million, EMC's was $602 million.

Dell

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, ranked fifth behind fourth-place

Sun Microsystems

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, gained 2.1 share points, the most of any company in the group, despite a drop in revenue from $334 million to $274 million. Sun lost a bit of share, while its revenue dropped by 11.9%

A spokesman for EMC noted that his company's numbers include products sold to Dell and then to end users. "EMC + EMC/Dell resulted in a 7% gain in revs, indicating that our new products and broadened channel strategy are bearing fruit," said Greg Eden.

Looking at subsectors in the market, HP also led the external disk storage system market while EMC led the market for network attached storage and the external RAID market.