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Installed Base of Storage Capacity More Than Twice by 2023: Forecast by IDC

International Data Corporation (IDC) has forecasted that the installed base of storage capacity worldwide will more than double over the 2018-2023 period , growing to 11.7 zettabytes (ZB) in 2023.

IDC’s Global StorageSphere measures the size of the worldwide installed base of storage capacity across six types of storage media, and how much of the storage capacity is utilised or available each year. The installed base of storage capacity is a cumulative metric: it is equivalent to the amount of new storage capacity deployed over the span of several years minus the systems or storage devices that either fail or are retired or decommissioned each year. The Global StorageSphere is a product of IDC’s Global DataSphere program, which measures how much new data is created and/or replicated each year.

The Global StorageSphere is large and diverse, encompassing many different storage technologies, and growing rapidly,” said John Rydning, research vice president at IDC. “Within the Global StorageSphere, enterprises, especially cloud providers, are increasingly being relied upon to store and manage the world’s repository of data.”

Key findings from the Global StorageSphere forecast include the following:

  • Only 1-2% of the data created or replicated each year is saved or stored for any period of time; the rest is either immediately analyzed or delivered for consumption and is never saved to be accessed again. Yet suppliers added more than 700 exabytes (EB) of storage capacity across all storage media types to the worldwide installed base in 2018, generating over $88 billion in revenue.
  • The installed base of storage capacity being managed by enterprises is outpacing that of storage capacity managed by consumers, largely because consumers increasingly rely on enterprises, especially cloud offerings, to manage their data. By 2023, IDC estimates that enterprises will be responsible for managing more than three quarters of the installed base of storage capacity.
  • The installed base of storage capacity is expanding across all regions, yet it is growing faster in regions where cloud datacenters already exist or are expanding. The installed base of storage capacity is largest in the Asia/Pacific region and will expand to 39.5% of the Global StorageSphere in 2023.


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