Backup and Storage

Demand for document storage driving disk sales

Companies are having to deal with ever-larger volumes of data

New research highlights the growing demand among IT departments for disk storage systems, as the amount of data businesses require continues to rise at a rapid rate.

Thanks to the continually increasing demand for file and document storage, IDC estimates that revenues from the sale of external disk storage systems will increase by 6.5 per cent to reach a worldwide total of $6 billion (£3.8 billion) in the second quarter.

That is quite an amount and goes to highlight the extent to which businesses have come to rely on document storage as they attempt to manager ever-larger amounts of information.

IDC senior research analyst of storage systems Liz Conner said that revenues from the sales of disk storage systems are growing on a "stable trajectory".

"Despite concerns regarding the global and regional economies, end users continue to invest in storage infrastructure," she said. "Helping to drive the worldwide market in quarter two was the double-digit growth in the emerging regions and strong demand for mid-range storage."

An area that saw particularly strong growth was open networked disk storage, including network-attached storage solutions that provide centralised data access to a group of different clients.

One company that knows a thing or two about storage is search engine giant Google, which operates its own global network of data centres.

To provide an insight into the amount of storage it manages and, more generally, the rate at which business storage requirements are growing, the company estimates that it has over 20 petabytes – 21.5 billion megabytes – of imagery from its Ground Truth project, which underpins Google Street Maps, alone.

Brian McClendon, who heads the Street Maps division at Google, disclosed the figure in a rare one-on-one interview with the BBC. The images were captured by the company’s fleet of camera-equipped cars, which, he said, have driven and recorded over five million miles worth of street views.