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NetApp: A 30-year evolution (and counting)

When NetApp got its start in 1992, using the internet meant praying your phone cable would help you connect and then waiting endlessly for a webpage to load. We’re proud to say we helped change all that. In a technology landscape defined by constant change, we’ve thrived by helping the world’s leading companies thrive. What’s our secret? Anticipating each new wave of change and continually advancing the industry-leading technology that drives businesses forward.

Our history

Throughout our history, NetApp has ridden wave after wave of change in the IT ocean. Have we been knocked off our metaphorical surfboard from time to time? Of course. But each time we have gotten back up with renewed determination. What inspires this steadfastness in the face of change is our customers. Simply put, we succeed when we help you succeed. By helping you embrace the full potential of new technologies, we like to think we play an important role in helping you move forward.

NetApp San Jose office
NetApp's San Jose Santana Row office space

Here are a few key milestones in our industry and the innovations that helped us lead the way.

1992: Advent of the “Toaster” – and ONTAP

Self-described hippies Dave Hitz and James Lau build an NFS server affectionately known as the Toaster – and a company then called Network Appliance, Inc. ONTAP, NetApp’s proprietary operating system, is born.

1995: Let’s take this baby public

NetApp IPOs in 1995, quickly growing to $1B+ in revenue.

2000: Data protection becomes increasingly affordable

NetApp releases SnapMirror® replication technology.

2002: Unified storage operations become the norm

NetApp creates the first unified SAN and NAS appliances–simplifying life for our customers (and our marketing team).

2004: You thought storage was already efficient? Wait for it.

NetApp releases thin provisioning and NetApp® FlexClone® technology, enabling our customers to compound storage efficiencies.

2007: Customers seek to maximize the benefits of virtualized environments

NetApp creates the first unified deduplication for primary and secondary storage.

2008: We’re changing our name (but not our mission)

For years customers affectionately referred to us as NetApp. In 2008 we decided to make it official.

2012: Our customers demand agile data infrastructures–and we deliver.

NetApp is the first storage provider to extend data center agility by enabling scale-out across unified SAN and NAS systems.

2015: New CEO (same great company)

George Kurian succeeds Tom Georgens as CEO, bringing his formidable business and engineering chops and kicking off the next phase of our evolution. NetApp acquires flash storage leader SolidFire, bringing ActiveIQ technology into our already robust portfolio.

2016: Integrating existing and emerging technologies

NetApp ONTAP® software centralizes data management across flash, disk, and cloud.

2018: Speed is the new scale

NetApp introduces its first end-to-end NVMe array, delivering over 1.3 million IOPS at 500 microseconds per high-availability pair.

2019: We’re #1 (according to Gartner)

NetApp is rated #1 in primary storage in the Gartner Magic Quadrant.

2020: Spot acquisition helps beat back customer cloud costs

NetApp acquires Spot, a leading solution for the continuous optimization of cost for both cloud-native and legacy workloads.

2022: Cloud first: A new chapter of NetApp growth

NetApp becomes the provider best equipped to unlock the best of hybrid cloud for its customers.

Of course, the future will be filled with many more waves of change. You can bet we’ll be the ones diving in, adapting and developing our knowledge, and enabling others to enjoy the ride.

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