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The background voices of digital transformation

Robert Allen, European Director of Marketing and Technical Services at Kingston Technology looks at how data centers have become the world’s biggest consumer of memory…

New product features are often designed so the user is unaware of their complexity, usually only by enabling a single toggle switch or checkbox. This apparent simplicity hides the hard work needed to make that feature possible – the efforts of hundreds of experts over years of painstaking research, and the contributions of many companies, the majority of which receive no stage time at all, but without them, the devices that the modern world depends on would not be possible.

Smartphones for example are typically built with hardware supplied by a multitude of different companies – the display, modem, processor and storage are products in their own right. The cloud services that are interwoven with modern software also have to be reliable enough to always work, which is only possible if they’re hosted in data centers that take full advantage of the latest innovations.

Today, we see an endless need for our own products to offer the best possible performance and security. The growth in these high performance cloud applications has increased demand for data center capacity and performance, which has helped SSDs become commonplace in these environments, as well as the enterprise.

The fast performance of SSDs leads to significant benefits for many use cases and applications. This includes front end web, media streaming, data warehousing, AI/data mining, virtualisation/VDI, OLTP acceleration, caching layer and high-performance computing (HPC). The user may only ever see a webpage, but the layers of hidden magic behind it is the result of significant effort.

With growth for computing capacity, data center is likewise now the world’s biggest consumer of memory. And the same is true of users’ devices. Workforces are now more mobile, handling an increasing amount of data on the move which intensifies the significance of data security far beyond the regulations of GDPR alone. This had led to a need for new innovations, such as self-encrypting drives, which offer data protection without performance reduction.

Mobility means there is still a lot of demand for removable storage, be that in phones, cameras, USB sticks or external SSDs. Even with all the cloud capabilities we have, there will always be demand for removable storage. Pretty soon, 1TB of information will be squeezed into a postage stamp-sized storage device.

Despite the growth in cloud services, consumer technology and IoT, internal storage is more relevant than ever. That’s not just in laptops and desktops, embedded storage is now found in a diverse range of gadgets and electronics, including TVs, industrial controllers, telemetry devices, human machine interfaces, automotive, industrial sensors, education tablets and more.

Digital transformation is about the proliferation of technology into every corner of society. It’s happening everywhere around us right now, and affecting us all. Whether it’s media shifting to online models, council and government services to the web, or high street shopping to e-commerce, the foundations of this new information- based world comes from the continued innovations of companies like Kingston.

Without the products built by vendors such as ourselves, used in billions of devices across every country and continent, this world would go offline. As this technology-led revolution continues, channel demand will continue to grow and change.

New challenges are to be expected for any firm that has a part to play in supplying the products that make a digital world possible. They’re challenges that are worth rising to – a data-first world brings solutions to age-old problems, and could lead to improved health, greater equality and a better society.

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