Storage Trends in 2011 Focus On Cost and Efficiency

Storage Our appetite for creating, gathering, and storing data continues to grow and grow and grow. The huge growth of videos, pictures, audio, social media and other unstructured data is taxing the storage systems of many data centers.

In addition other trends are impacting storage, including Cloud computing, virtualization, energy costs, economics and performance.  Businesses also are increasingly needing to keep multiple copies of data for regulatory compliance. These trends continue to put pressure on the storage infrastructure. As a result, CIOs and IT departments are looking to storage vendors to help them store more data in a smaller footprint, store more copies of data in different locations, and keep more copies of data for longer periods of time. 

Let’s face it, CIOs are focused on cost reduction. The cost of storage for most enterprises remains a high component of the overall cost of a datacenter, even though the cost of storage per gigabyte continues to drop.  More storage means more drives, which consume more datacenter space, power, and cooling resources, as well as human resources.  In this environment, CIOs will be interested in solutions that help reduce storage costs or improve efficiency of existing storage assets.  

In 2011, storage vendors must continue to seek ways to deliver storage more efficiently while reducing acquisition and operational costs, improving time to market, and reducing complexity. Storage vendors will be pushing CIOs to purchase technologies such as Thin provisioning, Data deduplication, Automated tiering, Flash technology, Solid State drives, and Virtual tape.

Analyst Perspectives

A review of analyst sites provides some analyst perspectives on the importance of storage as a trend.

“Data growth is the biggest data center hardware infrastructure challenge for large enterprises. Sixty-two percent of respondents reported that they will be investing in data archiving or retirement by the end of 2011 to address the data growth challenge.” – Gartner (link)

“Despite technologies that will increase storage efficiency, enterprise data will continue to expand by more than 40% a year. Enhanced performance requirements, coupled with the need to reduce power and capacity costs, will drive the creation of new storage technologies and services.” – Gartner (link)

“The emergence of cloud-based application and computing services is already having a profound impact on the storage industries” – IDC (link)

“Three Key Trends in Storage

  • Migration to smaller (2.5in.), more energy efficient enterprise-class hard disk drives (HDDs)
  • Greater utilization of existing storage capacity;
  • Continued adoption of solid state drives (SSDs) and various other storage efficiency technologies (e.g., data deduplication, compression, and thin provisioning).”  – IDC Oct 2010 (link)

Tony Pearson’s “Future Storage Trends” Deck

Tony Pearson is a Master Inventor and Senior Managing Consultant for the IBM System Storage product line at the IBM Executive Briefing Center in Tucson Arizona.  Tony blogs regularly at “Inside System Storage”.  Here is Tony’s deck on future storage trends.

Future Trends in IT Storage

View more presentations from Tony Pearson.

Drivers of this Trend

  • Data and content creation growth continues
  • IT organizations are keenly focused on reducing costs.
  • Power, cooling and space efficiency challenges.
  • Compliance and litigation support.
  • Risk mitigation.

Inhibitors/Challenges

  • Utilizing available capacity
  • Cutting power and cooling costs
  • Reducing redundancy of data
  • Reluctance to experiment with online storage

Implications

  • Technologies that help reduce storage costs or improve efficiency of existing storage assets will be in demand
  • Technologies to watch include Thin provisioning, Data deduplication, Automated tiering, Solid State drives, Virtual tape and Flash Memory

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Mobile Computing Poised To Impact B2B In 2011

Unless you have been living on another planet, you realize that mobile computing and the ecosystem that surrounds it is a major growth industry.  5 years ago, mobile meant being able to make phone calls with your cell phone and perhaps accessing the internet with your laptop. Today, mobile means something totally different, thanks to the introduction of the smartphone, the Iphone, Google’s Android, and just this past year, the iPad. 

HorizonWatching Mobile Computing - 2011 Today, more people are working through remote or mobile access than ever before. Mobile devices are increasingly being used for web searches and applications traditionally done from a desktop. Over the last year there has been a focus on the development of mobile applications, services and cloud infrastructures, both public and private. These efforts will focus on delivering new innovative services to employees, business partners, consumers, and citizens on any device, anywhere.

To stay competitive organizations are extending their resources, data, and connectivity to people wherever they are…whether that is in face-to-face customer engagements or in an operational setting, such as a retail store, supply chain logistics, or field service. In addition, users are demanding access where ever they happen to be….whether they’re in their car, on a plane, in a hotel, or on a weekend camping trip.

Mobile email, mobile websites and mobile applications are becoming viable channels in which to conduct business.  As smartphone adoption continue to grow through the roof, we are now seeing with the popularity of the iPad the emergence of the tablet form factor. I believe we are moving towards a place where the typical business user might have three devices….a laptop, a smartphone, and a tablet. IT developers will need to accommodate all three display form factors into their application environment.

And as a result, the mobile application infrastructure will need become more sophisticated. Enabling technologies will be new devices, faster networks, new location-aware technology, and improved mobile applications.

One area of focus today is Mobile Marketing. Consumers are wanting to use their mobile devices to help them do searches, get information on products and services, and help them make purchase decisions.  As consumers get used to using their mobile devices for consumer product purchases, they will increasingly want to use their devices in a business context. Marketing and sales managers need to understand the potential uses of mobile devices and how to apply the mobile marketing techniques to increase sales.

Some Analyst Perspectives

“Brands seeking a persistent presence with their customers must have a strategy to engage with their customers via mobile phones.” – Forrester, Sept. 2010 (link)

“59 percent of mobile consumers plan to use their mobile phone for holiday shopping and planning holiday celebrations, not including making phone calls” – Mobile Marketing Association, Nov. 2010 (Link)

“Consumers are relying on their mobile phones for more than talking and texting these days. They are using them for everything from reading and writing emails to watching the news, trading stocks, and booking hotel rooms.” – Forrester, Sept. 2010 (link)

“Mobile Proximity Marketing In U.S. to Reach $750M By 2011 And Nearly $6B By 2015” – Borrell Associates, Oct 2010 (link)

Adoption Drivers:

  • Growth of smartphones/tablets
  • The application development community is focused on developing mobile web application services and improvements in apps, browsers, and search will push new adoption.
  • Growth of location based apps
  • Faster networks (4G )
  • Mobile worker efficiency and productivity
  • Gen Y lives mobile / wireless life and will expect that in B2B transactions
  • Mobile devices are increasingly being used for web searches and applications traditionally done from a desktop.

Challenges:

  • Integrating mobile into business processes
  • Mobile analytics
  • Coverage in rural and undeveloped regions
  • Cost, Security issues.
  • Managing productivity of a remote workforce.
  • Reliability of mobile technologies

Implications for B2B:

  • Innovative mobile solutions enable new business models
  • Business processes and applications have to be re-engineered for mobile.
  • Expect increased interest in technologies that can boost the productivity of a remote workforce.
  • Growth countries use mobile as a leapfrogging approach to connect the base of the socio-economic pyramid to the formal economy.
  • Emerging solutions will include voice search, location-aware, and mobile video.
  • There will be increased focus on the development of enterprise-based mobile applications, services and cloud infrastructures, both public and private.
  • Knowledge economy produces a global and virtual workforce.
  • Mobile becomes a critical part of Unified Communication solutions

Some key mobile trends to watch in 2011 include Voice Search, Location Based Services, Video, Gaming, Event-Based Marketing, and Augmented Reality. On the horizon are applications like Mobile Video Collaboration solutions and 3D Mobile Internet allowing customers to browse 3D pictures/videos of products.  All this has implications for business processes throughout the organization. Some older companies will need to change culture and transform workflows as a result.  CIOs and IT leaders need to understand how mobile fits into their organization’s enterprise wide unified communications and social collaboration strategy.

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You Are Invited To The Social Business Jam

Last week, I posted about the emergence of the Social Business term to represent the next stage in how companies are using social and collaboration technologies in order to conduct business.  My post “The Social Business Train Is Leaving The Station Are You On It?” provides an overview of the trend and makes the case for why it is important.

As a follow-up, I wanted you to be aware of the Social Business Jam.  On February 8-11, 2011 IBM will host the Social Business Jam (www.ibm.com/social/businessjam).  Should you register, you will have the opportunity to collaborate with leading experts on topics such as:

  • Building the Social Business of the Future
  • Building Participatory Organizations Through Social Adoption
  • Using Social to Understand and Engage with Customers
  • What does Social mean for IT?
  • Identifying Risks and Establishing Governance

I will be jamming…along with some leading Social Business experts, including:

  • Charlene Li, Founder of Altimeter Group, Author of “Groundswell”
  • Mei Li Tan, CMO, Treasury & Trade Solutions, Citigroup
  • Steve Wylie, GM of Enterprise 2.0 Conference
  • Vittorio Cretella, CIO, Mars Inc.

Join me in the Jam.  Should be an interesting discussion.  It all starts February 8th, so register NOW!!!  www.ibm.com/social/businessjam

For those of you on Twitter, we’ll be using the hashtag #sbjam 

The Social Business Train Is Leaving The Station: Are You On It?

Social Business I expect the Social Business topic to be among the most talked about trends in 2011…and all that buzz is justified.    In fact, the buzz will kickoff next week as IBM conducts it’s Social Business Jam February 8-11, 2011.  I’ll post more about the Jam next week, but for now, head on over to http://www-01.ibm.com/software/info/social_business_jam/ and register for the Jam. 

Social collaboration is changing the way business is being conducted. Enterprise processes are being transformed by social technologies. Over the next 10-15 years, social computing capability will becomes part of every business function within the company.  I fully expect that social capabilities will become embedded in every single website, computing device for every participant in every single business transaction. 

In the future, all participants involved in a company’s business processes and transactions will have the ability to share content, comment on content, rate/vote on content, and collaborate in an open and sharing environment.  In addition, all this social activity will generate data that will be mined and analyzed in both batch and in real-time.  The insights generated will be a critical input into all business processes, including research, product development, marketing, sales, technical support, and even business processes like accounting, procurement, and legal. 

Since social will eventually be embedded in every business process and transaction workflow, social computing capability will need to be a critical part of every business application.  As a result, I expect entire business application suites will be rewritten to make use of social collaboration features.

Analyst Perspectives

“The social business model is changing the way companies generate and conduct business online, and IDC believes that this model will have a long-lasting impact“ – IDC (link)

“Social Technologies Will Drive The Next Wave Of BPM Suites” – Forrester (link)

“Just as the Internet had a disruptive impact on organizations' processes and business models at the beginning of the decade, today social media is changing the way business is conducted”. – Gartner (Link)

“Business application vendors are integrating social features into their applications and the dividing lines between transactional tools and social environments are fading.” – Gartner (Link)

“To optimize investments, competencies, and outcome, it is essential that enterprises establish a shared understanding of social technologies and trends, coordinate strategies and initiatives, and leverage investments.“ – Gartner (Link)

Implications

  • This will require a cultural transformation within most older, established companies.
  • Business leaders must realize that 80% of success of social business efforts will come from strategy, planning, roles, and processes — only 20% will come from the technology platform.
  • The path to a Social Business requires definition, education, and career paths.
  • Centralized implementation may be required for company-wide social tools, standards, policies and practices
  • Social capabilities will become embedded in every single website, computing device for every participant in every single business transaction. 

An important thing to realize is that the success of implementing social technologies into mature businesses will be how well business leaders can lead a cultural transformation in order to leverage these new social technologies.  Business leaders must realize that 80% of success of social business efforts will come from strategy, planning, roles, and processes — only 20% will come from the technology platform. All these new capabilities will require new Career Paths and Education tailored to the new social technologies. 

The Social Business Train Is Leaving The Station….are you on it yet?

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