| leading the way to the
new storage frontier|
10th anniversary of the Modern Era of SSDs by Zsolt Kerekes,
- January 2, 2013
|Even in a market which
appears to be so fast moving as the SSD market - where hot new SSD companies can
top SSD companies list
(ranked by search) within weeks of exiting stealth mode, and some new
SSD companies are
acquired within a few quarters of launching their first product - it can
still take years before new technologies which excite technologists,
investors are adopted by more than 10% of SSD users.|
strategic multi-year big changes and transitions which are sometimes hard to
pin down to a single year. For example the transition in the enterprise SSD
market from RAM
to 98% flash - which took 8 years.
Although it's easy to
recognize the start of new technology changes - it's harder to be so precise
about big market shifts - because those - by their very nature - occur only
when enough people get hold of a new way of doing things and change their buying
at the SSD market - 2013 now clearly marks the 10th anniversary of a
distinct market period which I now think of as - the Modern Era of
What do I mean by the Modern Era of SSDs?
It's when SSDs
changed from being a niche tactical technology which satisfied the needs of
some markets (ruggedized military / industrial storage and next generation
server acceleration at any cost) to a time when the market advance of SSDs as a
significant well known core market within the computer industry became a
historical inevitability - and when the only serious technology which could
displace an SSD from its market role was another SSD.
products which we would recognize as enterprise SSDs were shipping for several
years before 2003 - it was in that year, 2003 - when there was enough confidence
in the minds of enough people in the SSD market that the future of SSDs could be
much bigger (100x bigger) and different to what had happened before.
wasn't simply my publication of
an article at the time
which explained why this could happen - nor simply the immediately post
publication discussions I had with SSD industry leaders at the time - nor indeed
in later years when founders and managers of new SSD companies kindly
told me that some of their thinking about the possibilities for the SSD
market had been influenced by those earlier articles on
It's just as much the case that the alternative futures which could have knocked
the SSD market off-course (such as faster CPU clock rates,
hard drives or faster
optical storage) didn't
The year after year "no-shows" by SSD's past
phantom demons were just as important as the new SSD technologies which did put
in an appearance.
Today it's clear to anyone looking seriously at
the data economy - the SSD market is here to stay and has its sights set on
being at the center of your future hardware and infrastructure decision making.
to big upcoming changes in SSD market thinking?
Can I say anything
at all useful at this stage about what the 2nd decade of the modern era of SSDs
will be like?
I think it will be the time when a critical mass of SSD
users become more sophisticated in their understanding and use of different
types of SSDs - and when each part of the SSD market becomes less generalized
and more focused.
It's not just about the
SSD software, and
iit's not just about the
SSD chip technologies.
These simply outline possibilities. What's important - and what will become even
clearer - is the dividing lines and colors of application specific SSDs.
specific enterprise SSDs - is a technology trend which started
shipping more than 3 years ago. But - as I said above - markets happen when
enough people have decided
them happen - and not simply because pioneering products are available.
|some thoughts about SSD
where are we
heading with memory intensive systems and software?
a tale of SSD
influences - from industrial flash controllers to HPC AFAs
hidden and missing segments in the analysis of market opportunities for
enterprise rackmount flash
Since 2003 the only technology which has been
able to displace an SSD from its market role has been another SSD...