The HDD to SSD Crossover is all but complete – The Times of India Blog

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The author is Country Manager, Pure Storage India
To meet today’s challenges, organizations need fast access to all data. And based on the latest economics, it is believed that the industry will see an accelerated retirement of spinning disk. Why? Let’s find out…
In recent times, a lot of industry players in storage space have been talking about the shift from spinning disk to all-flash. So why has the industry relied so far on disk? While the ‘all-flash’ revolution could have been brought about in the past decade, it’s still not late. We have seen this in consumer devices (Tablets, Smartphones), client systems as well as enterprise computing platforms. And this trend is only going to accelerate further over the next couple of years. Here’s why: 
To meet today’s challenges, organizations need fast access to all data, whether it powers systems of record or key systems of innovation. Yet, up to now, the attractive economics of legacy spinning hard drives have forced IT organizations to distinguish between performance-oriented workloads and everything else. Simply put, disk was significantly cheaper than flash.
Over the years, data has also evolved, and so has its consumption. In fact, within the next five years, machine-generated unstructured data powering new workloads will grow in velocity to represent 80% of all enterprise data. Adding to this growth challenge, unstructured data does not reduce well, nor by compression or deduplication. It increasingly requires higher performance that is not easily met by spinning disk (at least not without the addition of expensive memory caches or write buffers).
These new workloads also need to be analyzed in real-time—for everything from AI-assisted diagnostic imaging, high-frequency trading in a hedge fund, fraud detection in a financial institution, or even robots making real-time decisions about how and where to send packages. Most importantly, all these workloads require the ability to recover rapidly in the event of a business-halting ransomware attack.
The fact is that all these capabilities are better served by solid-state flash. Based on the latest economics, it is believed that the industry will see an accelerated retirement of spinning disk. Why? Because,
In-fact, IDC in its Worldwide 2020–2024 Enterprise SSD and HDD Combined Market Overview, projects that SSDs will steadily displace performance-optimized HDDs (10K and 15K RPM) for primary storage in servers and storage systems, with SSD market revenue doubling from 2019-2024 to $30.7B in comparison to the enterprise HDD segment that is still growing, but significantly more slowly ($10.4B to $14.2B over the same period).
It is really encouraging to see the significant growth that all-flash SSDs will see in the coming years. Over the years, there was a common notion that flash was an expensive option, and enterprises restricted it to mission-critical environments. But not anymore. With data taking the centre-stage, there are a lot of innovations across the external enterprise storage. 
In India, according to IDC’s latest Quarterly Enterprise Storage Systems Tracker Q4 2020 that released in March this year, the growth of All-Flash Arrays (AFA) was evident across verticals with a contribution of 39.6% to the overall external storage systems market in Q4 2020. The report says that BFSI, professional services, manufacturing, and government verticals were the major contributors to AFA demand in Q4 2020. IDC also suggests that stronger uptake of NVMe-based flash arrays is witnessed due to significant performance benefits with negligible cost differences. In the coming years, enterprises would prefer NVMe-based flash arrays as de facto storage media for all the production workloads.
Now this is all great news. The best part is that the power of flash is enabling organizations to become more agile, scalable and significantly more efficient. Moreover, it’s what enables simple and fast access to your unstructured data; the data that is growing most rapidly in both volume and business value. All of this combines for customer outcomes and experiences all around
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Views expressed above are the author’s own.
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