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Upside for Consumer Networked-Attached Storage

Today there are many ways to create and share digital multimedia content. Beyond the usual digital camera or camcorder format, visual content can easily be authored and edited on notebook PCs, on media tablets and even on smartphones.

Using the latest software or mobile apps, the users of these devices that are equipped with visual capture capabilities are producing HD images and video content that must be stored or archived somewhere.

From a historical context, when the number of web-enabled devices in the home was minimal, consumer networked-attached storage (NAS) offered very little value. Free or low-cost online media storage has become the preferred solution for many.

However, as the number of portable consumer electronics (CE) and computing devices in the home explodes over the next few years, the need and use for in-home network-attached centralized storage will become more practical for one reason: multimedia content access.

According to the latest market study by In-Stat, their research forecasts that this network consisting of multiple computing devices sharing common storage, content access, and digital media sharing will become a key component that drives consumer value.

The increased demand for NAS will push worldwide consumer unit shipment growth to a CAGR of 36 percent from 2010 to 2015.

“The market for consumer NAS has come a long way in the last year. Many vendors have concentrated on simplifying the description of their systems, system setup, and management of their products,” says Norm Bogen, VP of Research at In-Stat.“The end goal for this transformation is for NAS systems to appear less technical and more consumer-friendly.”

In-Stat's latest market study found the following:
  • The combined market shares of the five largest vendors (Buffalo Technology, Apple, Western Digital, Iomega, and NETGEAR) increased to 62.8 percent in total NAS shipments -- including consumer and SMB NAS -- in 2010.
  • Europe will claim over 50 percent of all consumer NAS unit shipments in 2015.
  • The estimated household penetration of consumer NAS in North America will be 4.4 percenet at year-end 2015.
  • Worldwide revenues for consumer NAS were approximately $678.4 million in 2010.

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