2013 Digital Storage for Media and Entertainment Report Released

Comprehensive digital storage analysis and projections

The ninth annual report from Coughlin Associates on digital storage in media and entertainment, the 2013 Digital Storage for Media and Entertainment Report, provides 179 pages of in-depth analysis of the role of digital storage in all aspects of professional media and entertainment.  Projections out to 2018 of digital storage demand for content capture, post-production, content distribution and content archiving are provided in 59 tables and 88 figures.


The report includes results from a 2013 survey of SMPTE, HPA and Digital Production Buzz members on their digital storage needs in these target segments (comparing the results to similar 2009, 2010 and 2012 surveys).  These surveys were used to refine the current report analysis from previous editions and track industry trends. The report benefited from input from many experts in the industry, which along with economic analysis and industry publications and announcements, was used to create the data including in the report.

Some highlights from the report:
•    As image resolution and frame rates increases and as stereoscopic (and other
multi-camera) video becomes more common, storage requirements explode.

•    Several petabytes of storage may be required for a complete stereoscopic digital
movie project at 4K resolution, and there is some production work as high as 8K.  Within 10 years we could see close to an Exabytes of content created in a single major movie project

•    The development of 4K TV and other high-resolution venues in the home and in
mobile devices will drive the demand for digital content (especially enabled by high HEVC (H.265) compression

•    Activity to create capture and display devices for 8K & 4K content is occurring
with planned implementation in common media systems by the next decade


•    Flash memory appears to be reaching tipping point in professional video cameras
with survey results showing about 59% utilization in 2013 (growing from 2009,
2010 and 2012 survey results).  Flash memory is also playing a role in content distribution and post-production.

•    Storage in remote “clouds” is playing an increasing role in enabling collaborative

•    Between 2013 and 2018 we expect about a 5.8 X increase in the required digital
storage capacity used in the entertainment industry and about a 3.8 X increase
in storage capacity shipped per year (from 36,756 PB to 102,661 PB).

•    Total media and entertainment storage revenue will grow more than 1.9 X between
2013 and 2018 (from $6.2 B to $11.9 B)

•    The greatest storage capacity demand in 2013 was for digital conversion and
preservation as well as archiving of new content (about 98%).   Content distribution
follows in size with acquisition and post-production using less storage.

•    Active archiving will drive increased use of HDD storage for “archiving” applications
supplementing tape for long term archives

•    By 2018 we expect 61% of archived content to be in near-line storage, up from
43% in 2013.


•    Over 99 Exabytes of digital storage will be used for digital archiving and
content conversion and preservation by 2018.

•    In 2013 we estimate that 43.9% of the total storage media capacity shipped
for all the digital entertainment content segments was in HDDs with digital tape at 42.3%, 13.6% optical discs and flash at 0.3%.  By 2018 tape has been reduced to 37.1%, HDDs shipped capacity is 60.9%, optical disc capacity is down to about 1.6% and flash capacity percentage is still at 0.3% in 2018. 

•    Total revenue for storage media and devices used in media and entertainment
applications will increase about 20% from 2013 to 2018 ($741 M to $892 M).

•    Silver halide film as a content distribution media will vanish before the end
of the decade.

Purchase of the report and the accompanying power point presentation with report figures and tables provides the most definitive information on digital storage trends for the professional media and entertainment industry.

The 2013 Digital Storage for Media and Entertainment Report is now available from Coughlin Associates. To get a copy send a completed order form in the report brochure at http://www.tomcoughlin.com/techpapers.htm or call us at 408-978-8184
or email us at tom@tomcoughlin.com.