For the last few years companies have been holding back on buying storage system due to economic uncertainty, but enterprise organizations are slowly opening their wallets again, according to a recent report from Gartner Research.

Sales of external storage systems such as hard drives and flash arrays went up to $6.3 billion globally in the fourth quarter of last year up five per cent from 2012 but storage vendors still had a dismal year in 2013, according to Roger Cox, Gartner analyst.

The storage sector saw a weak 1.4 per cent revenue growth amounting to $22.5 billion last year. For 2014, Gartner foresees a slow three per cent growth in the market.

Last year growth can be attributed to pent-up demand and budget flushing or the spending of the remains of a company’s annual budget.

Cox said buyers remained sheepish largely because many economies, especially in Europe, remain fragile while the shutdown of the United States government in the middle of 2013 cut sales number in North America.

Many organizations are also turning away from controller-based storage and casting their eyes on cloud-based storage providers such as Amazon web Services, Microsoft Azure and Google clouds.

Among the biggest winners in the storage market in the fourth quarter were EMC, which controls 36 per cent of the market; and Hewlett-Packard, which reported a 25.3 per cent revenue hike and took 9.3 per cent of the market. Dell saw its revenues fall 14 per cent.

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