On tap this week is the AT&T – T-Mobile proposed merger, a PCIe ultracapacitor and flash based cache card, and Glustre joins open stack (and yes I know I am 10 days late to the party on this one.)
AT&T and T-Mobile Proposed Merger
AT&T announced plans to purchase T-Mobile USA this week. Frankly, this is going to put U.S. regulators in a bit of a tough spot. On one hand, Verizon is #1 in the wireless space by a healthy margin, so an AT&T – T-Mobile tie up would represent a new big competitor. On the other hand, with Sprint-Nextel being such a distant third I think regulators are going to look hard at the deal and potential divestitures. Two major wireless carriers would leave Sprint-Nextel in a distant third place.
The biggest issue is not just the potential to further slow innovation in the wireless network space or the lack of competitions potential upward influence on prices. I think regulators are going to look at how hard it is for a new entrant to get into the US wireless market before approving the deal. This is a merger to watch in the storage industry because wireless is becoming an increasingly important delivery channel. If data transfer costs rise in the U.S. there will be a host of businesses working to use local caching and compression to keep data costs down.
Netlist announces EXPRESSvault Cache Backup
I saw an interesting announcement this week from a southern California company Netlist about a PCIe (v1.1) x8 ultracapacitor plus flash cache solution with 1GB onboard. Rumor has it that in quantity these EXPRESSvault units are going for somewhere around $300 each and have a Linux driver. For the Linux storage server enthusiasts this may be an interesting option. There is no mention of a Solaris, FreeBSD, or Windows driver though.
Gluster joins Openstack
One thing I missed last week was Gluster joining Openstack. The basic goal here is to great a ubiquitous, open, cloud environment that is easy to deploy. This makes sense for larger operations where the simple LAMP stack (or LAMP in the cloud) are not sufficient to scale with the application. I do want to start covering Gluster a bit more in the future so this is at least an interesting development.