In an exclusive conversation with Faiz Askari of SMEStreet, Sandy Sun – Vice President & General Manager for Asia-Pacific and China Sales, Seagate Technology explained the storage market trends and changing consumer dynamics of Indian storage market.
Faiz Askari: How is Seagate looking at Cloud Solutions market in India?
Sandy Sun: As the need for data storage continues to explode, enterprise, cloud architects and data centre managers are challenged to deliver the highest quality of service at the lowest possible total cost of ownership (TCO).
Increase in the government spending on National Optical Fibre Network (NOFN) and various e-governance portals, coupled with growing acceptance of cloud services in SME segment is expected to drive the market for cloud computing.
India is a market with immense opportunities, given that more and more organizations at every level are opting for cloud based solutions.
Faiz: Which are the key technologies that are driving this space?
Sandy Sun: There are several technologies that are powering this space now a days enterprises are moving towards the cloud but majority of these still like to stand by the tradition storage and computer systems. Capacity enterprise, or nearline HDDs are expected to be a mainstream for inexpensive, reliable bulk storage, utilized by nearly all enterprise market segments, including servers, network or external storage and hyperscale or could service providers. According to TRENDFOCUS, nearline HDD unit volumes have increased from 3 to 5 million per quarter to surpassing 10 million per quarter. So it is natural that technologies that enable high capacity and consistent high performance nearline HDD are the key drivers in this space.
For Seagate, we adopted the Shingled Magnetic Recording (SMR) and Heat-Assisted Magnetic Recording (HAMR) and helium technologies. With these technologies, we improved the areal density (the amount of data that can be stored on a single disk) while maintaining a low cost per gigabyte, in order to support global growth in cloud and mobile usage. Cloud-based exabytes are expected to reach 60 percent of the data center market by 2020. As data complexity grows, user requirements are also becoming ever more diverse. We have seen how certain customers in cloud-based data centers are increasingly focused on reducing weight and power. Other customers continue to seek solutions that optimize cost balanced with performance. With our mix of helium and air drives, Seagate offers a comprehensive set of customer-driven solutions to a broader-than-ever range of users, in new as well as traditional customer spaces.
Faiz: SOHO, MSME & SMEs are considered to have less understanding towards Cloud. What are your plans and strategies to capture them as your customers?
Sandy Sun: In today’s competitive markets, startups and SMEs are competing neck-to-neck with larger enterprises or even leading two steps ahead. The cut-throat aspiration of being at par excellence makes them hungry for cutting-edge cloud applications that would help them in empower themselves with competencies that are usually seen in the repertoire of large enterprises.
Catering to the same demand, many enterprises are capitalizing on these similar demands and introducing easy-to-use cloud apps to empower ever-growing SMEs in India.
Faiz: What are the key industry segments within SME, SOHO that are showing interest towards cloud?
Sandy Sun: Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs), SOHO’s in India are the lifeblood of our economy. Empowering these enterprises is critical to push the economy forward and predominantly better technology would play a crucial role here. There are over 800 cloud startups In India and 25% startups as well as SMEs in India are already using Cloud as their primary delivery medium. According to various reports, by 2020, 80 percent of Indian SME’s will have their growth driven by cloud. Cloud computing can certainly be a game-changer for the SME industry in the days to come.
Pinpointing some of the industry segments that have been utilizing cloud computing;
- Ecommerce websites/ applications have adopted cloud computing at a huge scale as a result they are equipped with auto scalability, remarkable cost savings, increased speed, increased security, easier management and accessibility of data.
- Cloud-based CRM (or cloud CRM) also known as Customer Relationship Management (CRM) software is hosted in the cloud. Cloud-based CRM software can be accessed through the Internet, making it easy for all users to access the same information at any time. And as information is stored in the cloud, you and your team can also view customer information on the go by accessing the CRM data through mobile or on your tablet.
However, SMEs are now generally a lot more interested in Cloud – across the industries. In terms of application, customer facing and employee productivity applications would be the big drivers of move towards Cloud.
Faiz: What is Seagate’s go-to-market strategy for the SME segment?
Sandy Sun: Seagate looks at assisting these SME’s and SOHOS with its robust product range, as we realize they are very critical from the country’s economic stand point and we realize their potential. Seagate has its HDDs, SSDs and data storage systems are purpose-built for these enterprises. These help enterprises to improve their data centre performance, increase scalability, reliability and security.
- Enterprise HDDs, Optimised for TCO- The de facto standard in high-capacity and high-performance solutions. Seagate’s nearline HDD, including Seagate Enterprise Capacity, are purpose-built for a multitude of applications, workloads and storage tiers to maximise your storage efficiency. The largest portfolio of HDDs means you can choose from the highest capacity possible, and from a selection that meets your overall business performance capacities.
- SSDs, Driving Performance to New Levels- Improve speed, density and TCO in data centres Flash-based storage with blazingly fast performance, lower latency and reduced power consumption is changing how storage is architected. Seagate offers one of the broadest SSD and flash portfolios on the market to meet a wide array of enterprise storage needs.
- Systems, Built for HPC, Big Data and Analytics- Plan, deploy and sustain maximum application performance. Built on a legacy to extend innovation from the device into the information infrastructure, onsite and in the cloud, Seagate offers the fastest and most reliable data system solutions available giving enterprises and businesses a competitive advantage