The main driver for the projected uptake of microservers is the rise of mobile devices., According to another research firm, ABI Research, by the end of this year more than 1.4 billion smartphones will be in service. All of those smartphone users are demanding data enter services that IHS considers the perfect application for micro-servers.
"Cloud computing and data centers are in high demand--to serve more smartphones, tablets and mobile PCs being online," said Peter Lin, senior analyst for compute platforms at IHS, in a statement. "Specific aspects of server design are becoming increasingly important, including maintenance, expandability, energy efficiency and low cost. Such factors are among the advantages delivered by micro servers."
IHS defines microservers as being contained in a single housing consuming less than 45 watts per motherboard. The firm predicts that the market for microservers will grow more than 330 percent this year--from 88,000 units in 2012 to 291,000 units in 2013, 571,000 units by 2014 and 845,000 units 2015, with the total market forecast to top 1.2 million units by 2016.
The success of microservers will be at the expense of about 10 percent of the standard server market by 2016, up a stunning 50-times in just four years from today's penetration of just 0.2 percent, according to IHS. Microservers are now the fastest growing server segment, even when compared to other high-growth segments like cloud servers, blade servers and virtualization servers.
Micro-servers will grow at an average 130 percent compound annual rate until 2016, according to IHS. The firm says this forecasted rate is 26 times greater than any other server segment.