According to an article in Computerworld the product does not match features with EMC, but what if IBM is testing the waters with XIV to see if it can slowly turn their N Series customers into XIV customers. IBM's OEM version (N-series) of the NetApp Filers can't be as profitable for them as selling their own products. And know that they understand how to sell into the Filer market space it would make sense for them to introduce their own product offering.
You can read IBM's product announcement here
"The IBM XIV Storage System (2810-A14) provides the hardware platform required for the IBM XIV Storage System Software. The combination of hardware and software enables a revolutionary grid-based architecture designed to provide an exceptionally easy to use, high performance, scalable, reliable enterprise disk system for UNIX, Linux, Windows, and other supported distributed open server platforms. It can provide a platform to address the need for reducing complexity while keeping pace with midrange to high-end disk capacity demands. This system is a great addition to the IBM disk storage family, core products in the IBM Information Infrastructure. It is a good fit for clients who want to be able to grow capacity without managing multiple tiers of storage to increase performance and reduce cost. These users also may want to improve their backup capabilities, as well as reduce the task load on storage administrators. The XIV system is especially well suited as a consolidated utility storage for fast growing, dynamic mixed, and emerging workloads.
Statement of general direction
IBM intends to provide best practice configuration guidance, change management, asset awareness, capacity utilization, performance trending, and operational reporting capabilities via IBM TotalStorage® Productivity Center software support for the IBM XIV Storage System.
In addition, IBM intends to provide single sign-on capabilities for many IBM devices, including the IBM XIV Storage System and storage software applications that enable the administrator to use a single set of secure credentials to authenticate across all products via a single centralized point-of-control.
IBM plans, during the second half of 2008, to add support for XIV as a disk system managed by IBM System Storagetm SAN Volume Controller. This additional support will provide connectivity for XIV systems to the very broad range of operating system environments supported by SVC.
This statement of direction is based on Tivoli's current development plans and is subject to change without prior notice.
All statements regarding IBM's plans, directions, and intent are subject to change or withdrawal without notice. Any reliance on these statements of general direction is at the relying party's sole risk and will not create liability or obligation for IBM."