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EMC Wants To Be Under Your Desk

EMC has been gobbling up companies like there is no tomorrow. On Monday they sweetened the offer to acquire Iomega and this one introduces something new to EMC. With the possible exception of hosted backup and storage services from Dantz and Mozy, EMC has stayed away from marketing it’s wares directly to the home user. If they pull this one off, EMC for the first time will have real estate outside of the data center and in your home office or laptop case.

The potential deal reminds me of the Cisco acquisition of Linksys. In that acquisition the network juggernaut of the corporate world took over arguably the most popular name in home networking. Only briefly did they consider burying the Linksys brand. As I write this, the Cisco emblem glows orange on the familiar blue Linksys labeled router on my desk.

EMC is all about storage so in an overly simplistic view of things it makes sense. One has to wonder about the clash of cultures that will take place as big storage tries it hand at consumer electronics. EMC knows how to sell storage to big companies but R&D , marketing, and support of the home user is new territory for the Information Lifecycle Management vision. Even operating as a separate unit, reaching out to the desktop without the cover of an IT department at the customer could be more than “One EMC” bargained for.

Still there is little doubt that EMC could learn a lesson or two from the consumer market. Can you imagine “real people” using Powerlink? … Neither can I.

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