The network-attached storage (NAS) market has been forecast to increase at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 21.58% through to 2016, driven by the need for cheaper and efficient storage infrastructure, and the mixed adoption of storage components.
NAS is file-level computer data storage connected to a computer network providing data access to a heterogeneous group of clients. NAS not only operates as a file server, but is specialised for this task either by its hardware, software, or configuration of those elements.
NAS is often manufactured as a computer appliance - a specialised computer built from the ground up for storing and serving files - rather than simply a general purpose computer being used for the role.
The increase in digital content in enterprise networks is leading to complications in the storage architectures. Enterprises are adopting various storage technologies and integrating them to obtain an architecture which can support all types of data storage and retrieval.
With the increasing demand for storage infrastructure, the frequently-accessed data is stored in the SAN architecture and long-term storage is supported over the NAS device. NAS devices are generally being used for timely backup of the storage and to maintain backup to support disaster recovery.
The potential emerging market for NAS is the consumer market where there is a large amount of multi-media data. Such consumer market appliances are now commonly available. Unlike their rack mounted counterparts, they are generally packaged in smaller form factors.
The price of NAS appliances has plummeted in recent years, offering flexible network-based storage to the home consumer market for little more than the cost of a regular USB or FireWire external hard disk. Many of these home consumer devices are built aroundARM, PowerPC or MIPS processors running an embedded Linux operating system.
Key players currently dominating the NAS market include EMC Corp., Hewlett-Packard Co., IBM Corp., NetApp Inc., and Oracle Corp.
For more information on the NAS market, see the latest research: NAS Market
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