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Demand for tape storage media is at an all-time high

Total worldwide tape storage media capacity shipped reached record levels in the fourth quarter of 2014. A key driver for why more data is being stored on tape than ever before is tape’s powerful blend of cost effective, scalable, dependable, fast, removable and easy to use storage which continues to deliver a powerful solution to the challenges of data growth across a wide set of storage goals and vertical markets.

Tape Storage Growth of tape at an all time high

The unstoppable rise of tape storage continues

Yes, I know what you're thinking. Storage media. Yes, tape storage. Your eyes are becoming heavy. You feel a sudden strong impulse to either sleep or click the back button. But wait! Don't do either of those things! Before you turn away thinking that you've heard it all before, I encourage you to stay and read further.

The unstoppable rise of tape” is a bold statement but it’s simply a fact that today we are using more new tape storage than at any point in history.

"New" is the key word in that sentence as I’m referring specifically to the capacity of data cartridges sold and shipped in the final three months of 2014.

There really isn't a debate about tape OR some other form of storage. Different types of storage do different things, some better than others for specific purposes. Until something comes along that is more efficient, secure and cost effective than tape at archiving epic quantities of stuff, tape is here to stay. Advocates for and against can move the football around all they like but no one is getting near the end zone any time soon. And as and when customers decide that there is something better, then we’ll all know because technology markets are brutal. We only need to compare recent sales of Blackberries and iPhones to be reminded of that. With technology, there is little room to stand on sentiment or allow products and solutions to graze in gentle retirement.

So back to that statistic I cited above. In the fourth quarter of 2014, according to new report from SCCG, the tape industry shipped 6,638 petabytes of data on new cartridges. That brought the total for 2014 to an astonishing 26,082 petabytes.

26,082 petabytes is 16% more than in 2013 and a whopping 26% more than 2012!

Out of sight, out of mind, it's indisputable that we depend on tape to be the bedrock of our digital society like no other technology. Whilst new storage ideas raise storms on the surface and attract attention, tape is quite literally the oceanic depth of our content store.

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