A surge in sales of cloud infrastructure products at Dell has helped the vendor grab market share and catch up with HPE, according to the latest data from IDC.
The analyst claims that in Q2 this year, the global market for both public and private cloud infrastructure - server, storage and switches - rose 14.5 per cent annually to $7.7bn (£6.05bn).
HPE was the market leader with 16.4 per cent share, thanks to a 14.4 per cent growth in sales to $1.3bn. But rival Dell was hot on its heels - its sales in the space rose almost half (48.2 per cent) past the $1bn mark, taking its share up from 10.1 per cent a year ago to 13.1 per cent in this year's second quarter.
The tension between Dell and both HP and HPE has been ramping up in recent weeks. Just today, HP's CEO Dion Weisler took a pop at Michael Dell at the Canalys Forum in Barcelona, boasting that HP does "all our business through the channel", compared with the 50 per cent figure Dell had boasted earlier.
At HPE's Global Partner Conference in Boston last month, Dell hired performers to dance outside the venue carrying giant Dell-branded balloons.
Outside the battle between the top two, Cisco grabbed 1.5 points of market share after its sales jumped 31.8 per cent to $846bn.
Fourth- and fifth-place EMC and Lenovo also enjoyed growth in the market, with sales up 11.3 per cent and 26.6 per cent respectively. During Q2 this year, EMC was still a separate company, as its acquisition by Dell did not close until last month.
IDC said the market is looking positive.
"In general, the second quarter did not have as difficult a compare to the prior year as the first quarter did, and this helped improve growth results across the board compared with last quarter," said Kuba Stolarski, research director for computing platforms at IDC.
"In the second half of 2016, IDC expects to see strengthening in public cloud growth as key hyperscalers bring new datacentres online around the globe; continued strength in private cloud deployments; and declines in traditional, non-cloud deployments."
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