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ESG and Scality Report: AI, Automation Driving Need for All-Flash Object Storage as Primary Application Data Storage

Spending for AI and automation is on the rise, and 77% of businesses report on-premises all-flash object storage is essential for successful digital transformation

Digital business initiatives like automation and artificial intelligence demand high-performance and massive capacity storage. In turn, this is driving adoption of on-premises all-flash object storage to provide customers’ top need — comprehensive data protection at scale. That’s according to a new research paper released today from Enterprise Strategy Group and Scality, the object storage pioneer.

ESG’s prior research found that AI/ML and analytics are the business differentiators IT needs. Accordingly, 64% of IT decision-makers using AI/ML expect to increase spending in 2021.

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To meet the AI challenge, the report finds that IT leaders are transitioning their data storage ecosystems to run on all-flash object storage, encroaching on the territory of traditional primary storage solutions. All-flash object storage powers the heavy workloads necessitated by these initiatives by quickly giving access to large volumes of unstructured data.

The most significant all-flash object storage benefits include accelerating AI/ML environments, empowering business intelligence/analytics, increasing infrastructure performance and utilization, and improved application development.

The report finds:

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  • 77% of IT professionals at organizations currently using all-flash object storage say the technology has had a high impact or has been a game-changing technology in their on-prem storage environment.
  • Similarly, among organizations using or interested in all-flash object storage, 77% say new workloads or initiatives are driving demand for it.

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Rapid adoption has already begun:

  • 95% of respondents are using flash storage within all or part of their object storage environments; 23% say they already have an all-flash object storage solution.
  • 87% of respondents at organizations not using all-flash object storage today expect to evaluate an on-premises all-flash object storage solution within the next 12 months.
  • 57% of respondents ranked data protection and reliability as a highly important attribute of all-flash object storage solutions; 23% ranked performance as a top attribute.

Scott Sinclair, senior analyst, Enterprise Strategy Group, said: “Digital business initiatives are fueling an increased emphasis on creating, storing and using data. This trend has led to increased adoption of on-premises all-flash object storage. It is early in the adoption phase but will become pervasive. All-flash object storage is well on its way to becoming a foundation of the modern storage ecosystem.”

Paul Speciale, chief product officer, Scality, said: “While the race to access and harness data faster to power AI is on, companies need to ensure they have the most protected, reliable environment. In fact, comprehensive data protection is customers’ number one need. Customers are looking for platforms to improve their ability to access and harness data, especially as data sets grow at an average rate of 34% annually. The results from ESG demonstrate the urgency of moving toward solutions that can support organizations’ critical applications, AI and ML initiatives.”

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