175 Zettabytes of data expected by 2025

Just in case you were wondering just how much data 175 zettabytes represents, it’s precisely 175 trillion USB sticks with a 1GB capacity. In fact, according to IDC’s report, if you were able to store the entire Global Datasphere on DVDs, then you would have a stack that could get you to the moon 23 times, or circle Earth 222 times. That’s a lot of data, with the majority having been produced in the last 5 years!

Digital transformation is growing rapidly and is quickly changing the way both individuals and businesses in almost every industry function today and in future. As consumers we're living in a very digitalised environment, heavily dependent on our mobile phones, online access, and increasingly connected vehicles to keep up with friends and family, access goods and services, and run nearly every aspect of our lives. Yet data transformation is not solely about the evolution and increased usage of devices, in fact, in the grand scheme of things devices play a microscopic role. When it comes to digital transformation, the primary and possibly most impactful aspect is the integration of data into industrial operational decision-making.

Businesses across the globe are utilising data to remodel themselves - becoming more agile, monitoring production standards, replicating otherwise manual activities precisely, and analysing 'big data' to make commercial decisions. Today’s economy is heavily reliant on data. Data is also used to enhance customer experience, providing greater levels of personalisation to customer journeys to gain greater engagement in a world of digital noise. It all means the need for data storage facilities, analytical software, and the demand for data professionals who can interpret the data, is at an all time high.

With an increased and ever-growing requirement for data and the expectation that it can be called upon as needed, it means data centres play a pivotal role in ensuring it is housed safely. Whether hyperscale facilities for global companies or server rooms and co-lo sites for SMEs, the number of data centres is growing almost as fast as the data produced. In every case, the power network supporting the servers, switches and climate control functions must be robust and resilient so that our 24/7 online lives can continue unimpeded. With such constant power demands, it's unsurprising that data centre operators look for eco-friendly, carbon-neutral solutions for the buildings, integrating solar, natural cool-air, and wind-powered renewables into their plant setup.

Our collective demand for data is unlikely to slow - the advantages that AI, industrial automation, and even a good website for marketing or e-commerce purposes, bring to us means that we're not stepping back. Data Centres will continue to spring up and in 5 years time, whilst we probably won't be measuring stacks of DVDs as a comparison (it's all about online on-demand downloads after all), we'll be even more connected and estimating an even steeper growth for the following years.