August 12, 2013

Recently, Simon Robinson of 451 Research wrote a Spotlight about the object storage trend in enterprise. This Spotlight provides an overview of why object storage is so appealing to IT departments and how it will be adopted in the future. He also discusses some of the key players in the space, including Basho’s Riak CS.

Currently, a popular object storage use case involves enterprises looking to develop cloud storage services to compete with Amazon Web Services. Robinson points out that there are a number of other potential use cases including: cost-effective alternative storage for unstructured data (which currently sits on expensive systems), backups and archives for companies looking to move away from tape, and for building web-based applications. However, despite these relevant use cases, Robinson notes that adoption is just starting to pick up. To help drive further adoption, Robinson suggests educating the industry on the benefits and differentiators of object storage as compared to traditional SAN and NAS.

Additionally, he observes that the market is also pointing towards open source object storage as a business model, which is also helping to encourage adoption. At Basho, we have observed this firsthand – part of why we chose to open source Riak CS (cloud storage). The decision to open source Riak CS last March has allowed us to build our presence as an industry leader through customers like Yahoo! Japan, Turner Broadcast, Tier 3, and many more of the Fortune 500.

To help with adoption, Basho has also found Riak CS’ operational simplicity and scalability to be a large differentiator. Since Riak CS is built on top of Riak, it offers the high availability, fault tolerance, and ease-of-scale that Riak is designed for. Switching to a new infrastructure can be a daunting task for operations teams, which is why Riak CS focuses on making that transition easier while providing more long-term benefits.

With the amount of unstructured data quickly growing, Robinson concludes that companies will need to adopt these object storage solutions sooner or rather than later. Basho has already experienced much of this growth and is continually working to improve Riak CS to meet the needs of all enterprise’s. Simon Robinson’s full Spotlight can be found here.