Pure Storage CEO: NetApp, Dell, HPE aren’t real cloud storage
Joseph F. Kovar
‘[HPE GreenLake and Dell Apex] are just financial models to allow customers to pay a subscription for storage rather than as capex. Or rather, it’s really more like a lease model in most of these cases. As we bring technology into the data center that allows the customer to both manage and offer storage and data management services to their developers in the form of APIs,” said Charles Giancarlo, CEO of Pure Storage.
Raise the storage bar
A few years ago, Pure Storage took a breathtaking turn from being a vendor of all-flash storage arrays to becoming one of the leading storage vendors and one of the top two standalone storage developers today. The Mountain View, Calif.-based company’s growth stems from an early decision to focus on developing software optimized for flash storage rather than commodity SSDs, and hardware optimized to run that software, according to Pure Storage CEO Charles “Charlie” Giancarlo. .
Giancarlo, in an exclusive meeting with CRN, said Pure Storage’s approach to making storage capacity on its all-flash storage arrays available as pooled storage available for use anywhere from on-premises clouds to public and private clouds, is different from that of its competitors. Technologies such as Dell Apex and Hewlett Packard Enterprise GreenLake are little more than changes to how storage is funded, and both, as well as NetApp, still require storage to be tied to an application stack.
“With our competitors’ arrays, customers continue to take the storage systems, physically attach them to their application environments, manage them themselves,” he said. “And when their developers need storage, there’s a lot of manual processes in between for IT to offer storage to developers for a new application environment.”
[Related: PURE STORAGE CEO: NO STOPPING EVOLUTION TO CLOUD, FLASH]
Pure Storage, on the other hand, makes storage services available as needed through APIs, Giancarlo said.
“We provide a software management environment where IT defines a set of data storage services for their developers, and then developers access them through APIs,” he said. “No need for a phone call, no need for physical rearrangement. It’s very similar to how Amazon or Azure offer their storage services, but [they do it] just in these clouds. We do this through the hybrid cloud.
Given Pure Storage’s growth, it’s not unreasonable to expect the company to eventually rise to the top of the storage industry despite the much larger size of its competitors, Giancarlo said.
“We’re the only company that treats data storage as cutting-edge technology rather than a commodity,” he said. “And we’re the only company looking to bring a cloud operating model to the private and hybrid cloud world by allowing data to present itself to the IT organization as just a pool of storage, and allowing their developers to ‘access data storage through APIs.’
For a deeper dive into Pure Storage and Giancarlo’s thoughts on the storage industry and the changing macro environment, click through the slideshow.