Gartner backup – by which I mean the traditional Gartner perspective on backup vendors as published in the Gartner Magic Quadrant for Backup and Recovery for Data Centers – used to be simple.  Then a few years ago Gartner began publishing a second Gartner Magic Quadrant for Disaster Recovery as a Service (DRaaS.)  Later in 2016 Gartner changed a few of the inclusion criteria for the Gartner Magic Quadrant for Backup and Recovery for Data Centers.  All of this has led to some confusion among buyers.  Since Unitrends is one of only two vendors in both Gartner backup magic quadrants (along with IBM, which is a bit misleading since IBM actually offers two completely different products for the two markets), we get a lot of questions about Gartner backup.  The purpose of this blog post is to shed as much light as possible on the two Gartner backup magic quadrants.

There are three posts that set the stage for this Gartner Backup post, the are

It’s not necessary to read these to understand the article below.   These will help you understand more deeply the Unitrends point of view regarding Gartner backup which will follow this post.

Gartner Backup: Gartner Magic Quadrant for Backup and Recovery for Data Centers

This is the older, traditional, Gartner backup magic quadrant.  Gartner describes this magic quadrant as being focused on 500+ employee companies.  Prior to 2016, there were quite a few backup vendors in this magic quadrant; in 2016 there were limitations included that eliminated most (not all, but most) of the lower-end backup and recovery companies.  The core strategic planning assumptions for this magic quadrant include

By 2020, 30% of organizations will leverage backup for more than just operational recovery (e.g., disaster recovery, test/development, DevOps, etc.), up from less than 10% at the beginning of 2016.

By 2020, over 40% of organizations will supplant long-term backup with archiving systems — up from 20% in 2015.

By 2020, 10% of storage systems will be self-protecting, obviating the need for backup applications, up from less than 2% today.

By 2019, 30% of midsize organizations will leverage public cloud IaaS for backup, up from 5% today.

By 2018, 70% of business and application owners will have more self-service control over their data protection services, up from 30% today.

By 2018, 50% of organizations will augment with additional products or replace their current backup application with another solution, compared to what they deployed at the beginning of 2015.

By 2018, more than 50% of enterprise storage customers will consider bids from storage vendors that have been in business for less than five years, up from less than 30% today.

By 2018, the number of enterprises using the cloud as a backup destination will double, up from 11% at the beginning of 2016.

Gartner Backup: Gartner Magic Quadrant for Disaster Recovery as a Service (DRaaS)

This is the newer Gartner backup magic quadrant.  Gartner describes this magic quadrant as being focused on < 1000 employee companies.  This magic quadrant is expanding in vendor count while the older magic quadrant is decreasing in vendor count; Gartner notes that it expects DRaaS revenue to triple by 2019; typically the older magic quadrant has growth of less than 10%.  The only strategic planning assumption for this Gartner backup magic quadrant is

From 2016 through 2020, the use of either DRaaS or IaaS to support the failover of production applications will grow by more than 200%.

Reconciling Gartner Backup

So let’s quickly try to reconcile Gartner backup.  We’ll do this through Gartner’s market definitions and strategic planning assumptions.  The three major differences we find are

  • The DRaaS magic quadrant calls out a focus on buyers with less than 1000 employees.  The traditional backup and recovery for data center magic quadrant list a focus on buyers with > 500 employees.
  • The DRaaS magic quadrant calls out a 200% growth in applications and a 300% growth in revenue.  The older backup and recovery for data center magic quadrant does not explicitly list market growth in its strategic assumptions, but this market typically grows at less than 10%.
  • The older backup and recovery for data center magic quadrant lists a set of opinions regarding customer usage of cloud most of which shows relatively weak growth; the DRaaS magic quadrant does not call out cloud usage since it is by nature 100% cloud.

In my next post, I’ll reconcile the perspective of Gartner backup with Unitrends backup.

As always, would love to hear any comments or questions from you.  Thanks for reading!