That tape technology is alive and well today is evidenced by the major brands that continue to invest in research and development of tapes, tape drives and tape libraries. Through the LTO consortium, the organizations behind these brands also contribute to the specification of the LTO tape format to ensure future-proofing. In a market where supply is ample, the answer to the question “which brand is preferred” is not a simple one. Is price a determining factor? Or is there more to it?
The major players in tape technology
In the tape technology market, there are many vendors selling media and tape equipment. Within this market, IBM, Hewlett Packard Enterprise (HPE), FujiFilm and Quantum have become the biggest players in tape storage:
- IBM: with a comprehensive portfolio of proven software, hardware and solutions, IBM offers cutting-edge technology that aligns with current innovations, is committed to open standards and delivers high performance.
- HPE: edge-to-cloud company with more than 20 years of experience using HPE StoreEver tape storage solutions to connect, protect, analyze and use the data and applications in organizations wherever they are.
- FujiFilm: has been providing organizations with advanced data protection solutions since 1959 to help them effectively manage the exponential growth of data.
- Quantum: provides end-to-end solutions for storing, managing, enriching and archiving unstructured data throughout its lifecycle. From hyperscale archives to video surveillance and from content enrichment to data protection.
With 65 years of innovation, IBM is the established leader in tape media and drives. But tape library supplier Spectra Logic has also focused on innovation in storage systems and solutions for more than 40 years. Thanks to these established names, the tape technology market remains constantly evolving.
Choosing the right tape brand
Plenty of supply in tape storage automatically makes the choice more difficult. And just comparing prices between them is not enough to determine which is the right brand for your organization. Indeed, the latter is relative. What is most appropriate for one organization may be totally inappropriate for another.
Determining what is the most appropriate brand for a client requires customization. For example, for some, price may be the deciding factor and for others it is interchangeability that determines which supplier is chosen. For example, if the customer has an HPE library, the recommendation is to choose HPE tapes. And in certain situations, the barcode range plays the decisive role. In fact, this range must match the range that is currently conducted at the customer’s site. So choose tapes that continue at 151, when they left at 150. So which brand is the right tape brand is not a foregone conclusion. This depends on several factors, such as price, comptability, brand dependence and barcode range.
Delivering as a service
Price and technology developments within tape technology contribute to the choice of which tape storage brand suits a customer, but are not always decisive in themselves. Together with the client, we look at exactly what tape or equipment he is looking for and within what budget. That way we know which factors are decisive in determining which tape storage brand is the best fit for the customer. We therefore consider the supply of tape media and equipment to be a service and therefore, our specialty.
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