ZTE eyes top 5 global server market share


Amid the explosive growth of global data volume in the era of multi-cloud and edge computing, server and storage products (SSPs) have formed the core element affecting the development of digital economy.

A new generation of IT equipment is required to achieve powerful data processing capabilities, smarter improved operations and maintenance (O&M), and a simpler deployment method. As the infrastructure platform of enterprise IT systems, servers need to undertake the important tasks of responding to a large number of service requests and processing services.

In providing strong computing support for enterprise and industrial digital transformation, ZTE Corporation has been investing in its SSPs and achieving innovative breakthroughs since 2005.

In terms of product design, verification, production and test certification, ZTE adopts top industry components and carrier-grade standards and specifications that are higher than IT standards. For example, ZTE’s 5G network has higher requirements and test indicators for the function, performance and stability of the underlying server hardware.

For this reason, ZTE has become a mainstream global supplier in industries such as telecom, finance and power. It shipped more than 100,000 servers in 2020. From 2016 to 2020, its server and storage revenue increased by 7.9 times. It aims to be a top five player in the global server market within the next five years.

ZTE’s constant innovation has led research and consulting firm Frost & Sullivan to present it with the 2021 Global Server Product Innovation Award. ZTE servers were commended for providing new momentum for the digital transformation of various industries with high performance, high reliability, flexible expansion, energy savings, and easy O&M.

First-mover power

As an early access manufacturer of Intel and AMD processors, ZTE’s servers boast extreme performance and a hardware-based modular and unified software platform that allows on-demand customisation and flexible expansion.

In April 2021, soon after Intel® released its third-generation Xeon® Scalable Processor, ZTE released its G4X series server based on the CPU. And in June 2021, the ZTE R5300 G4X 2-socket server set SPECCPU records with 489 points and 576 points in SPECrate 2017 floating-point calculation and SPECrate 2017 integer calculation performance tests, respectively.

The server’s built-in intelligent calculation acceleration engine can flexibly dispatch various heterogeneous resources, such as CPU+GPU and CPU+FPGA, to satisfy such satisfy such compute-intensive scenarios as artificial intelligence, image processing and industrial control.

The R5300 G4X server supports a maximum of 80 cores in two sockets and provides super general computing power. A maximum configuration of eight T4 GPUs or four A100 GPUs provides extreme heterogeneous computing power.

With 32 memory slots, the server supports Intel's Optane™ Persistent Memory 200 series and a maximum rate of 3,200 MT/s. It is also geared to provide large storage capacity with 41 2.5” disk slots or 20 3.5" disk slots plus 4 2.5”disk slots, 28 NVMe solid state disks, and high-speed I/O interfaces.

Further, the R5300 G4X server inherits the carrier-grade reliability and energy-saving efficiencies of ZTE server products. It is optimised through:

  • Power modules adapted for different configurations and hybrid dual-channel power supply.
  • Main board layout and power supply module layout designed to reduce air resistance and increase ventilation.
  • Intelligent heat dissipation, proportional-integral-derivative (PID) fan speed control and intelligent efficiency management to reduce energy consumption.

The R5300 G4X server also features built-in software protection, full-memory encryption and Trusted Platform Module (ISO/IEC 11889) or Trusted Cryptography Module to ensure security.

Grappling with data centre complexity, ZTE SSPs offer tool-free O&M. For example, they are designed to allow easy installation and configuration of firmware upgrade as well as automatic, batch and remote routine preventive maintenance. Further, organisations are able to predict faults and reduce equipment failure rate by analysing performance and log data.

Ideal match

As an integrated ICT provider, ZTE’s computing, storage, network, infrastructure-as-a-service and platform-as-a-service solutions can be customised to flexibly match the unique requirements of various industries. Its servers are deployed in more than 40 countries and regions globally, covering telecom, finance, power, transportation, government affairs, and other industries.

For example, in the telecom market, ZTE has acquired the largest share of China Mobile’s general server order (including the centralized PC server purchase and the network cloud resource pool server purchase) for three consecutive times since 2019.

In June, 2021, ZTE secured the largest share in the Engineering Computing Server Procurement of China Mobile's Centralized Network Cloud Resource Pool Phase III. With 60% share of the winning bid, ZTE will deploy about 17000+ R5300 G4 servers. 

ZTE’s selection was based on its quotations, product test results, product quality, supply capability, and after-sales service level.
The servers matched the network cloud service scenarios in terms of product design, function, and performance. These capabilities are pivotal in helping telecom enterprises like China Mobile with cloud migration as well as cloud and network integration.

“The hardware and software of ZTE's full range of products are deeply customised, self-controllable, more secure, more energy-saving, and more compatible,” says Guo Shubo, General Manager of ZTE's Server Storage Products. “To date, ZTE's SSPs have been serving operators, banks, smart cities, the internet and many other industries and enterprises to accelerate their digital transformation."

In the China finance industry, ZTE occupies a 10% market share, serving state-owned banks, joint-stock banks, urban commercial banks, and insurance and securities industries in China. Financial institutions deploy ZTE servers and storage to build stable and reliable financial cloud platforms.

Meanwhile, power companies turn to ZTE for strong safety controls as well as stable and smooth operations. Holding 15% share in the power industry, ZTE has become a mainstream supplier for the State Grid Corporation of China, China Southern Power Grid and other operations-related enterprises in China.

ZTE also commands a strong presence in the government sector. For instance, it has helped China’s Ministry of Industry and Information Technology to build a big data monitoring platform for epidemic prevention and control. Similarly, it has built the national data centre in Bangladesh to support a unified, cloud-based e-government platform. The platform serves the IT needs of government departments, enterprises and the public.

Laying a solid foundation for digital transformation of various industries, ZTE has promptly met customers’ project delivery and after-sales service expectations through rapid delivery processes and more than 10,000 experienced after-sales service personnel.

ZTE has established a resilient server supply chain by actively pursuing global diversified resources, adhering to self-development of core technologies, and coordinating and cultivating independent industrial chains. It sustains business continuity of key products with major supply sources across the European Union, North America, and Asia Pacific.

Overall, enterprises that deployed ZTE SSPs have benefited from their extreme performance, flexible expansion, robust security, high reliability, easy O&M, energy efficiency as well as resilient and secure global supply chain.

In selecting ZTE for the Product Innovation Award, Frost & Sullivan noted that as companies in related industries place ever higher requirements on server performance, reliability, adaptability and flexibility, ZTE has kept up by constantly innovating and launching new products to meet the greater demands.