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Big data to boom over coming years

Growth in the global market for big data analytics solutions is set to significantly outpace that of the IT market as a whole over the next few years, becoming one of the most important trends in the sector between now and 2017.

This is the finding of International Data Corporation's (IDC's) latest Worldwide Big Data Technology and Services forecast, which anticipates a compound annual growth rate of 27 per cent between 2013 and 2017. This equates to around six times the projected average growth rate of the IT industry as a whole as more firms place data insight at the center of their business strategies

IDC estimated that this will lead to the industry being worth $32.7 billion by the end of the forecast period. It noted that even though there are several potential market forces that could alter the scenario for data analytics and "many demand and supply variables remain in flux", it remains confident of strong growth over the next four years.

Dan Vesset, vice-president for IDC's Business Analytics and Big Data research team, observed: "The big data technology and services market represents a fast-growing multibillion-dollar worldwide opportunity."

The forecast also made several predictions about how businesses will implement the technology into their operations. For instance, it forecast that knowledge worker roles will begin to be significantly impacted – and in some cases even replaced completely – by automated decision-making systems that are reliant on big data analytics technology.

Firms are also set to make changes to their IT ecosystems in order to accommodate a larger focus on big data and business intelligence. With the amount of information growing rapidly, it will become unsustainable for many organizations to continue relying solely on on-premises data centers.

As a result of this, the cloud computing industry is also set to benefit from the rise of the innovation, due to firms migrating their data warehousing solutions to this technology. As well as being used to store newly-gathered information, significant amounts of existing data will also be archived on the cloud, or disposed of completely. This will have a knock-on effect on revenues for traditional data center storage providers.