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Forget HDDs and SSDs, DNA storage could be the only answer to our data troubles

A new report has shed light on the extent of the dilemma facing organizations as the demand for data storage capacity continues to skyrocket. Published jointly by Fujitsu and Twist Bioscience, both of which operate in the archival storage market, the report(opens in new tab) predicts the gap between available storage capacity and demand will exceed 7.8 million petabytes by 2030. In this scenario, businesses will be left with no choice but to delete large swathes of old data to make room for the new, which is enough to send a shiver down the spine of any firm with aspirations in areas such as artificial intelligence.

Data dilemma

As the volume of data produced by internet activity, digital devices and IoT sensors continues to expand at an aggressive rate, businesses are running out of time to solve a critical problem: where to put it all.

While hard disk drives (HDDs) and solid state drives (SSDs) do an excellent job of holding and supplying the quantities of data that servers and client devices need to function, neither are well-suited to storing information en masse and for long durations.

When it comes to archival storage, Linear Tape-Open (LTO) magnetic tape rules the roost, with the lowest cost per capacity of any technology. The current generation of tape, LTO-9, has a native capacity of 18TB and can be purchased for as little as $150 (or roughly $8.30/TB).

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