Gartner hands mic to customers on HCI

Gartner has issued a Peer Insights “Voice of the Customer” report on hyperconverged infrastructure (HCI) containing a four-box diagram which is radically different from its last HCI Magic Quadrant mapping.

A Peer Insights report is an aggregated customer review and ratings document with reviews moderated and validated by Gartner analysts to ensure they are genuine. Only vendors with 20 or more eligible published reviews during the specified 18-month submission period and at least $50 million in revenues are included. 

Here is the Peer Insights (PI) chart based on 1,145 reviews:

Gartner Peer Insights

And here is the November 2021 HCI MQ diagram:

Gartner Magic Quadrant

The axes are different, with the PI chart using vertical Overall Rating and horizontal User Interest and Adoption axes. Boxes are separated by market average lines, with suppliers measured relative to their position on the market average for each axis. A vendor must meet or exceed the average Overall Rating in the segment to be positioned in the upper quadrants.

We see Aspiring vs Established boxes at the bottom of the chart, and Strong Performers and Customers’ Choice at the top. Suppliers are placed in the boxes (in alphabetical order) by Gartner analysts counting and measuring users’ assessments. 

The MQ’s equivalent axes are Ability To Execute and Completeness of Vision, with suppliers placed by Gartner analysts. In short, the PI chart is not an MQ diagram, although both use a four-box template and top performers go in the top right-hand box.

Having that in mind, let’s see what this PI documents says about HCI suppliers. The document contains a table with alphabetically listed supplier’s overall ratings:

Gartner Peer Insights

The starred entries are in the Customer’s Choice category. What’s astonishing is that HPE and VMware are at the bottom of the table. Three Chinese suppliers – Huayun Data Group, Sangfor Technologies, and SmartX – share the top 4.8 rating with Dell and Nutanix. Microsoft, Scale Computing, StarWind, and StorMagic get rated at 4.7, while HPE and VMware both get a lowly 4.4.

We think there is a strong geographical aspect to this HCI document with the Chinese suppliers unlikely to sell and support in western geographies and the western suppliers unlikely to have a strong China presence.

There is detailed information about each vendor, plus individual reviews, with favorable and critical reviews and Likes and Dislikes highlighted. You can read these for yourself as this PI Voice of The Customer HCI document is downloadable. The somewhat complicated measuring and assessment methodology is described here.