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The pendulum of data storage is swinging back from when only cloud data was valued. On-site data is back and the hybrid model is on the rise.



In case you haven’t heard, hybrid storage is becoming one of the most used data storage models. “Hybrid” data means using a combination of local on-site storage and off-site cloud storage. Some businesses also run a “private” cloud data center kept at their office that only secure computers can access when working remote, giving those users large computing power on any budget device.


So which is best, on-site storage or cloud storage? The truth is they both have benefits and drawbacks. Let’s discuss them and show why the hybrid model will be best moving into the future!


The Value Of On-Site Data

On-site data centers have generally been more expensive than the cloud data centers which save on costs by going anywhere and bringing in many clients. But recently there’s been a shift back towards on-site data centers for their security value. There is no security like on-site security, so companies tend to keep their most secure data locked down with the fewest possible chances for exposure.


A benefit of cloud data storage is that buying more takes a few seconds rather than a few days to buy and install parts on-site. When a company sees their storage needs grow unexpectedly on short notice, they will usually need to rely on cloud storage. This does however come with the flaw that cloud data storage is shared, and computing power may occasionally be lower if everyone happens to access the same cloud data center at once. On-site storage and private clouds don’t have this problem.


The Power Of Cloud Data

There should be no surprise that cloud data has been on top for so long. For a few examples, cloud data storage allows even the smallest business to have giant storage space, which allows anyone to develop new data-heavy apps and software. Or with the growing demand for IT professionals, not every business is able to hire the team they need. Cloud data storage means you don’t need to hire IT staff, because most cloud data centers will provide IT services too.


Data centers have become far more conscious of their need to consider the environment, moving towards sustainable power sources and less emissions. Thankfully computer parts have become more power-efficient and data centers are finding better ways to cool off, placing cloud data centers in colder climates or even underwater. And cloud data storage is an investment in your potential future needs, such as if the business grows and you need to serve regions far from your local area.


Schools have experienced difficulties transitioning to remote learning but perhaps the best methods of virtual teaching are nearly here, and remote work is clearly here to stay. Online products and services have grown as well, alongside the growing storage requirements from IoT devices, permanent video records of everything and the giant data needs of Machine Learning technologies. Our society has changed, forcing data into the cloud.


Why Hybrid Storage Is The Best

The best model of data availability and security would be the hybrid approach, where high-risk secure information is kept on-site and less-secure critical information has backups in the cloud in case either source is unavailable when needed. This also becomes the strategy for business continuity in case of local disasters, with duplicate information kept at both sites.


Hybrid data storage benefits partially-remote work because employees can access their data in the cloud and then visit the office to access secure documents. Additionally, hybrid data storage is more affordable than other solutions, with on-site data storage adding up over time despite the benefits, and cloud data storage cheaper but with a few small drawbacks.


TierPoint and VMware point out that true hybrid models would combine on-site data storage with one or more private clouds and the use of public clouds. The first is most secure, the second is very secure and accessible anywhere for high-value remote work, while the third works well for basic remote work and gives more storage during data use spikes. In combination they are the best of all options.


Outlook For The Future

ALSO reminds us that the data center services market was expected to double from 2020 to 2026 due to an increased use of digital media distribution, more digital tech and tech companies, remote work and the IoT. Or consider that with the trends of more remote work and less in-person work, we could someday see the complete acceptance of Telework, or in other words when people control robots to do their work at a site somewhere else in the world. These will all require powerful Hybrid data storage.