Seeking Alpha

Market research firm IDC reports that 3Q05 data storage equipment sales to businesses were quite strong -- data was recapped in the Wall St. Journal (sub. req.) -- key numbers by sector:

Sales of hard-disk-based storage gear, the core machines used by companies to house data, were $5.74 billion in the third quarter, up 13.3% from the same period a year ago...

Storage [is] growing faster than sales of computer servers -- the other major computer-hardware purchase made by companies -- in each quarter so far. IDC said last week that sales of servers rose 8.1% to $12.5 billion.

Storage growth has been driven by the broad acceptance of data-intensive applications, from digital video and images to vast e-mail repositories. IDC said the capacity of all the storage sold in the quarter was 505 petabytes, 58% higher than the same period a year ago...

And by market share:

1) Hewlett-Packard (NYSE:HPQ): 23.5%
2) International Business Machines (NYSE:IBM): 20.7% - largest growth among top three in sales (19.7% up)
3) EMC Corp. (NYSE:EMC): 13.7%.
4) Dell (NASDAQ:DELL) (sales up 30.8%)
5) Network Appliance (NASDAQ:NTAP) (sales up 22%)