The escalating amount of data pouring into file-based and object-based storage arrays is forcing enterprises to rethink their storage-buying strategies. New industry numbers from researcher IDC released Aug. 7 bear this out.
The worldwide file- and object-based storage market--known within the business as FOBS--continues to gain momentum, with revenues to exceed $23 billion in 2013 and forecast to reach a whopping $38 billion in 2017.
IDC contends that the continued sharp increase in overall enterprise storage systems sales can be traced directly to a shift to FOBS from conventional storage.
"The future of storage is software based," IDC Storage Systems Research Director Ashish Nadkarni said. "FOBS solutions are much more versatile and will quickly outpace more rigid, hardware-based options."
Scale-up solutions, including unitary file servers and scale-up appliances and gateways, will fall on hard times throughout the forecast period, Nadkarni said, and will experience only sluggish growth through 2016 before beginning to decline in 2017.
On the other hand, scale-out file- and object-based solutions–delivered either as software, virtual storage appliances, hardware appliances, or self-built for delivering cloud-based offerings–are forecast to show robust growth with a compound annual growth rate of 24.5 percent from 2012 to 2017, Nadkarni said.
Additional metrics from IDC's research include:
--Do-it-yourself storage will become more prevalent over the forecast period, but commercial solutions will still garner strong demand.
--Outside the data center, storage traffic is undergoing a dramatic shift, because the growth of mobile, social and cloud is heavily tilted toward the use of IP-based connectivity mechanisms for consuming storage resources.
--Revenue for unitary host-based file servers is shrinking as businesses move to purpose-built platforms.
--Growth of object-based and object-oriented file system storage solutions for public cloud and private cloud archive environments will continue to outpace the market.