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Data storage trends include increases in cloud, NAND flash

"The cloud is here to stay," said analyst Scott Sinclair. So are containers. NAND flash is another popular storage trend highlighted in a recent report.

The last 18 months have been an interesting and critical period for the data storage industry. Organizations were not only forced to rethink their storage strategies due to the COVID-19 pandemic, but they had to deal with data volumes that continued to increase at exponential levels.

It's going to take a combination of storage methods -- flash, disk, tape and cloud -- to handle it all.

In its sixth annual "Data Storage Outlook" report, Spectra Logic Corp. detailed several data storage trends and statistics. For example, NAND flash continues to be the fastest growing technology in the market, with durability and speed that both consumers and enterprises like. Disk drive volume shipments dropped by 20% in the year preceding the 2021 report versus the previous four quarters. LTO-9 tape, which can hold 18 TB uncompressed (or 45 TB compressed) on one cartridge, will become generally available this year. While backup has largely moved to disk-based technology, the use of tape for long-term archive continues to grow, according to the report.

The cloud had been one of the top data storage trends for years, and the pandemic only accelerated its use. Spectra has seen more customers move to cloud applications and storage because they couldn't put people in data centers, said CEO and founder Nathan Thompson.

"It served as that inflection point," said Scott Sinclair, senior analyst at Enterprise Strategy Group, a division of TechTarget.

Once an organization has made the transition to the cloud for applications and data, they typically stay there. In addition, vendors such as Dell EMC, Portworx and NetApp are tackling containerized workloads, one of the hottest data storage trends.

"It's something every vendor is working on," Sinclair said. "I don't think anyone has solved it."

In this infographic, learn more about data storage trends and capacity statistics, both current and predicted.

Thumbnail Image: Data storage trends include increases in cloud, NAND flash
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This was first published in August 2021

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