IBM is believed to be planning the launch of its next generation of blade servers next week, as it attempts to stay number one in the market ahead of Hewlett-Packard.
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Big Blue’s BladeCenter server platform is expected to see new server models which can interact with each other more efficiently in their shared chassis.
The blade market is an important segment for IBM, HP and third-place company Dell, as blade sales have rocketed from a previous low base.
Analyst IDC says blade sales grew 97% in the third quarter of 2005, when compared to the same quarter the previous year.
This growth compared to just an 8% sales increase for the overall server market, said IDC.
IDC says IBM has 42% of the market, with HP on 32% and Dell on 9%. Sun Microsystems is also planning a serious foray into the blade market, with machines using processors from AMD and its own Sparc chip range.