Yesterday, on his Computerworld blog, Curt wondered whether appliances are mainstream, or even dominating the email security market...
Mainstream? Definitely. Witness vendors such as Barracuda (frighteningly inexpensive, now with a mature product range), IronPort (investing heavily), CipherTrust (arguably the segment leader), etc. etc. As further proof, the two big traditional software security vendors are also launching appliances: that's McAfee and Symantec. Many organizations are attracted to the "fit and forget" promise of appliances. There's less to worry about.
But dominating? No. Growth rates are impressive, but today the major revenues are still from traditional software solutions. Hosted solutions also challenge the appliance segment, in terms of revenue (e.g. Microsoft's new beau, FrontBridge).
There's plenty of anecdotal evidence to suggest people are switching from software to appliances. But equal amounts to suggest switching from appliances to hosted. There's no clear trend: it looks like all three segments will continue to hold substantial chunks of the market.