Big Data to take big strides in 2013

As 2012 comes to a close, it is that time of the year when we look behind to gain insights for what lies ahead. While analysts and market researchers are coming by hot tech trends for 2013, many readers might wonder – how much is hype, rhetoric and real.

Every technology or a concept need to pass through the hype to reality phase and technologies like cloud (once branded as hype) stand in testimony to that evolutionary cycles. Most of the predictions for 2013, puts Big Data as the key tech trend for 2013.

But as we browse through the brief history of big data, it is not really new and it has just got a name as increasingly enterprise looked at finding ways to profit from data.

Many large company CIOs looked at big data during 2012 with cautious optimism. In an interview to Dataquest few months back, Venkat Iyer, CIO, Wockhardt mentioned that Big Data becomes relevant only when data sizes becomes humongous – in excess of 100 TB and above and it will be relevant only to select few verticals like telecom insurance, banking et al.

Some CIOs are more bullish, take the case of Alpana Doshi, CIO, RCOM, told Dataquest that “big data is becoming the next big thing and big data helps organizations in maintaining a competitive advantage by focusing on growth areas.”

Most of the CIOs we spoke to and the responses ranged from extremely bullish to  skeptical. .

But one thing, CIOs by and large accept the critical role big data will play. Now most of the enterprises have come to a point of understanding that until unless the unstructured data is mined, they cannot profit from the huge insights the data provides.

It would get bigger in 2013

So 2012, set the tone for big data in India and in more ways it can be called the mixed bag. But 2013, many believe the big data conversations will change – from a more: ‘What big data can do’ to ‘What big data has done to my business’. The bullish optimism comes from the gross underutilization of data for meaningful insights.

This becomes evident as we look at we look at the new IDC Digital Universe study titled: “Big Data, Bigger Digital Shadows, and Biggest Growth finds that only a tiny fraction of the world’s big data potential is being realized, though the amount of useful data is expanding. The study sponsored by EMC also stated that less than 1% of world’s data is analyzed and less than 20% is protected.

What is more interesting and a fact that brings the huge impending opportunities on the big data space over the next year was some of the damning revelations the study pointed out. For instance, it said large quantities of useful data are getting lost and the study pointed out: “The promise of Big Data lies within the extraction of value from large, untapped pools of data. However, the majority of new data is largely untagged file-based and unstructured data, which means little is known about it.”


Looking at some statistics the study pointed out that in 2012, 23% (643 exabytes) of the digital universe would be useful for Big Data if tagged and analyzed. However, currently only 3% of the potentially useful data was tagged, and even less was analyzed.

The amount of useful data is expanding with the growth of the digital universe. By 2020, 33% of the digital universe (13,000+ exabytes) will have big data value if it is tagged and analyzed.

Jeremy Burton, executive VP, product operations and marketing, EMC Corporation reflecting on the study said, “As the volume and complexity of data barraging businesses from all angles increases, IT organizations have a choice: they can either succumb to information-overload paralysis, or they can take steps to harness the tremendous potential teeming within all of those data streams. This year’s study underscores the massive opportunity that exists for businesses that not only identify the potential benefits of the digital universe, but recognize the importance of navigating that universe with the right balance of technology, data security practices and IT skills.”

With this backdrop, we can safely say that in 2013 ‘Big Data’ will take big strides.



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