Entertainment industry’s storage needs to lift 5.6 times: report

11 July, 2012 by Brendan Swift

The entertainment industry's digital storage needs are expected to be 5.6 times higher by 2017, according to a new report.

The eighth annual report from Coughlin Associates on digital storage in media and entertainment included results from a 2012 survey of mostly SMPTE members on their digital storage needs. The film and television industry is facing a growing storage challenge as the industry converts to digital, affecting content capture, post-production, content distribution and content archiving.


The report also predicted a four-fold increase in storage capacity shipped per year (from 22,425 petabytes to 87,152 petabytes) out to 2017 while total media and entertainment storage revenue will grow more than 1.4 times (from $5.6 billion to $7.8 billion) over the same period.

The most widespread form of storage across all sectors in 2012 was digital tape (43 per cent), followed by hard disk drives (41 per cent), optical discs (16 per cent) and flash (0.2 per cent). By 2017, tape will be reduced to 38 per cent while optical discs will fall to about 3 per cent. Hard disk drives will rise to 59 per cent and flash memory will have increased to 0.3 per cent. Silver halide film as a content distribution media will vanish before the end of the decade.

The report also found that digital conversion and preservation required the greatest storage capacity in 2012, followed by content distribution and post-production.