IDC has released a study focusing on its European Vertical Market Survey findings regarding familiarity and investment plans for storage area network and network attached storage across Western European vertical markets.

IDC's survey confirms a shift from direct attached storage (DAS), mainly internal to server, to networked storage technologies, but vertical markets are moving at a variable pace, with demand linked to different functional areas, depending on the industry considered. This study highlights the differences among vertical markets in awareness, adoption, and preferred use of networked storage.

Survey results reveal that there is still a need for education and the creation of awareness of network storage technologies in specific sectors, such as retail/wholesale and healthcare/education, where the lack of knowledge is hampering penetration.

Storage area network (SAN) emerged as a relatively well-known technology across most verticals, and was familiar to 74 percent of survey respondents, with moderate variation across vertical markets. SAN is the second storage technology of choice, following internal DAS, across most functional areas, and reported a significant level of adoption in selected verticals, but its penetration is still relatively low overall.

Network attached storage (NAS) is unknown to 42 percent of companies, and adoption is still far from widespread, with only around a quarter of respondents currently investing; nevertheless, it was selected as the preferred storage technology by a significant share of respondents in certain functional areas, revealing good growth opportunities connected to each industry's specific needs.

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