Published: 2014.07.15

Gartner has been seeing a steady rise in client inquiry and deployment of these integrated backup appliances in midsize and large enterprises.

[Gartner’s 2014 Magic Quadrant for Enterprise Backup and Integrated Appliances]

The reception in the market to Unitrends being included for the first time in Gartner’s 2014 Magic Quadrant for Enterprise Backup and Integrated Appliances has been amazing – thanks to everyone who have written about this.  The most common question we’ve gotten to date has asked how we feel about CommVault, EMC, IBM, and Symantec being placed in the upper right-hand quadrant versus Unitrends being placed in the upper right section of the lower left-hand quadrant.  I think it’s a pretty important question. Gartner called out the strengths of Unitrends; in particular our Recovery-Series appliances, our Unitrends Enterprise Backup™ virtual appliance, and the integration with ReliableDR of these products.  Gartner further called out the fact that we’re field-tested with over 10,000 customers and our all-in-one licensing and centralized management of multiple appliances. But to me, there’s a more interesting question – which is why Unitrends continues to so successfully sell against CommVault, EMC, IBM, and Symantec.  I think the reasons are simple:

  1. Ease of Use. People who use Unitrends Recovery Series physical appliances and our Unitrends Enterprise Backup virtual appliance rave over how much easier to use these products are than the typical “enterprise” backup products from CommVault, EMC, IBM, and Symantec.  For the most part, these products are so complex they don’t offer trials on their web site – you have to be qualified by sales in order to ensure you have enough technical help to use the product.  Many of these companies drive a large amount of revenue through the need for such services – for example, half of CommVault’s revenue is driven by professional services needed to deploy, monitor, and manage their Simpana software.   Unitrends bridges this gap by offering enterprise capabilities for heterogeneous environments that are simply much easier to use.
  2. TCO/Price. The TCO (Total Cost of Ownership) of physical backup appliances appeals increasingly to larger organizations that can’t afford to allow precious IT staffing to spend their days tinkering with servers, storage, networking, operating systems, and various data protection software (e.g., dissimilar bare metal backup, image backup, file backup, archiving, replication, and so on).  And the pricing of backup appliances, which is driven by higher volume markets than those typically associated with larger enterprises, tends to be lower than traditional enterprise backup software even when you don’t include the server, storage, networking, and other hardware.
  3. Recovery Assurance. Prior to our acquisition of PHD Virtual, Unitrends offered physical Windows instant recovery and virtual instant recovery along with automated operating system-level recovery assurance in the form of auditing physical Windows servers for spin-up.  But when we acquired ReliableDR™ (along with Unitrends Virtual Backup™, version 8 of which was released last week), we were able to take begin offering automated and orchestrated recovery assurance at the application level.  This is a new trend – and one which the traditional vendors are ignoring at their own peril – making recovery every bit as easy and automated as backup.

What do you think?  As always, would love to hear from you.