Forecasting the future of data storage: case of hard disk drive and flash memory
Article publication date: 29 August 2008
This paper aims to forecast the future of data storage technologies, using the case of two major technologies driving the data storage world; hard disk drive (HDD) or conventional longitudinal recording and flash memory.
Four principal tools of forecasting technology are applied to present the coming future of data storage technologies. These tools consist of bibliometric trend analysis, patent trend analysis, technology cycle time (TCT), and growth curve. Numbers of publications each year and cumulative patents are used to analyze the future of these competitive technologies. The median age of the patents is applied to find the technology lifecycle of both technologies. Finally, areal density of HDD is plotted on the growth curve to forecast the saturation point of researching on conventional longitudinal recording.
The results produced from utilizing these tools indicate that these two technologies are continuously under development. It is found that the growth of improving areal density of conventional recording will be nearing zero by year 2013 and the maximum growth rate of development was in year 2006.
The forecasting is based on principal technologies of conventional longitudinal recording of HDD. Also, NOR and NAND are considered as two main technologies dominating flash memory. Other emerging data storage technologies such as holographic data storage, phase‐change memory (PCM) are not included in this paper. Likewise, the growth curve of flash memory is not analyzed as part of this paper.
This paper forecasts the future of data storage technologies. Integration of scientific indicators and growth curves is demonstrating a powerful tool for forecasting technology futures.
Daim, T.U., Ploykitikoon, P., Kennedy, E. and Choothian, W. (2008), "Forecasting the future of data storage: case of hard disk drive and flash memory", Foresight, Vol. 10 No. 5, pp. 34-49. https://doi.org/10.1108/14636680810918496
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