Apple Storage Device Delayed

The vendor said that its Xserve RAID product won't hit the market until at least early 2003

Apple Computer Inc. today said that its first external storage product wont hit the market until at least early 2003, according to a posting on the companys corporate Web site.

"Weve received an overwhelming thumbs up on our Xserve 1U rack-mount server from customers and reviewers since it started shipping in July and now were working hard to deliver Xserves companion RAID product in early 2003, not by the end of calendar 2002 as originally announced," the Apple posting read.

Apple gave no reason for the delay of the as-yet unnamed network-attached storage unit it describes as a "companion RAID product." Apple officials were not immediately available for comment.

Industry analyst Rob Enderle, of Giga Group Inc., in Santa Clara, Calif. said the delay is symbolic of bigger problems at the Cupertino, Calif. computer company.

"I think its more the case that they really dont have a market for this thing yet," Enderle said. "They wouldve been able to private-brand something overnight. That shouldnt have been a major problem."

Apple also plans its own host-bus adapter, for users of Xserve to connect to 2 Gbps Fibre Channel storage devices, and also plans to support management software from IBMs Tivoli division as well as from Veritas Software Corp., officials have said.