The Digital Universe in 2020 - India


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This IDC Country Brief cover India, where the amount of data created, replicated, and consumed each year will grow an amazing 23-fold through the end of the decade, according to the 2012 EMC-IDC Digital Universe study.

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The Digital Universe in 2020 - India

  1. 1. I D C C O U N T R Y B R I E FT H E D I G I T AL U N I V E R S E I N 2 0 2 0 : B i g D a t a ,Bigger Digital Shadows, and Biggest Growth inthe Far East — IndiaFebruary 2013By John Gantz, David Reinsel, and Marshall AmaldasSponsored by EMC CorporationContent for this paper is adapted from IDCs Digital Universe Study, December 2012, sponsored byEMC. Additional content for the study can be viewed at ProfileDigital Universe in India to Grow 23-Fold Between 2012 and 2020The digital universe in India, or the digital bits captured or created each year in the country, isexpected to grow from 127 exabytes to 2.9 zettabytes between 2012 and 2020 (see Figure 1).If all of the digital information created by India in 2012 had to be stored on Apples latest iPhone 5(32GB) smartphone, it would take more than 5,100 stacks of iPhone 5 devices as tall as thesubcontinents famed Mount Everest. The total digital data created in the country will more thandouble every two years, or grow by 50% every year. Indias share of the global digital universe willgrow from 4% to 7% between 2012 and 2020. By 2020, its digital universe, if printed out as text,would make a stack of books (equivalent to the 100,000-word paperback version of The HungerGames) reaching from Earth to Pluto and back 10 times. Asias giants India and China togetheraccount for 17% of the digital universe today; their contribution to the total digital universe is expectedto be as high as 29% by 2020.6501
  2. 2. Whats driving this growth? Continued growth of Internet usage, social networks, and smartphones among consumers. Wide adoption of smartphones in lieu of traditional feature phones is one of the biggest factors driving digital data creation. Indian ISPs are aggressively pushing free and bite- size data plans (some under a dollar) on mobile devices in an effort to accelerate the mobile Internet user base. Falling costs of technology. Devices that can create, capture, manage, protect, and store information are also catapulting digital data creation. The availability of easily affordable Android- based smartphones with price points as low as $65 has brought these devices to the masses. Lets not forget that India is home to the worlds cheapest ($20) tablet — Aakash. Migration from analog TV to digital TV. Broadcasting regulatory body Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) enforced a mandatory switchover from analog to digital transmission for the major cities in India on October 31, 2012, and the switchover for the entire population of 1.3 billion is expected to be completed by 2015. Growth of machine-to-machine communication, including security images. Today, Indias contribution to the worlds total machine-generated data is a little over 5%. As the country progresses on its path toward modernization and automation in both the private sector and the government sector, a much larger number of devices will be at work in Indian networks, which will be communicating and generating larger and larger amounts of log/record data.India has more than 140 million Internet users, according to Internet World Stats, up by a factor ofnearly 30 since 2005. This includes 65 million Facebook users; by 2015, India may have moreFacebook users than any other country, according to Socialbakers, a research firm in London. Inaddition, in 2012, India had a Gen Y population (ages 15–29) of approximately 310 million, or 25.47%of the total population, according to the Indian Population Bureau. Similar to Gen Y populations indeveloped nations, large fractions of Indias Gen Y demographic are Internet savvy and are heavyusers of social media and instant messaging communication channels. Indias Gen Y populationalone is almost equal to the entire U.S. population in 2012.Last year, India had nearly 1 billion mobile phones in use and around 750 million TV viewers. Thecountry has more cinemas and produces more movies than the United States. It has been a pioneerin the digital distribution of films via satellite, with one firm alone (UFO Moviez India) supporting morethan 3,000 cinemas in 1,300 cities.It’s also worth noting that Indias digital universe is growing faster than available storage. This is afunction of an increasing amount of transient data — from phone call routing signals and digital TVsignals watched but not stored to signals coming from the Large Hadron Collider at CERN that arediscarded within microseconds. The issue with storage in the digital universe is less about how tostore all the bits than about how to store what must be stored intelligently, economically, andsecurely.The Consumer InfluenceWhen we first started studying the digital universe, the origin of a majority of the bits within it camefrom mature markets: In 2005, the United States and Western Europe accounted for 49% of thedigital universe. But as Moores law has made digital technology — computers, smartphones,cameras, TV, movies, industrial equipment — cheaper, the technology has become affordable formore and more people around the world. Over time, the distribution of the bits within the digitaluniverse by country of origin will more closely mirror the distribution of the population. By 2020, theUnited States and Western Europe will generate only 30% of the bits in the digital universe. 2 ©2013 IDC
  3. 3. However, in India, the contribution of individuals, as consumers or workers, creates a paradox.Individuals accounted for only 42% of the regional digital universe in 2012 (lowest compared withother regions), and enterprises created 58% (see Figure 2). Nevertheless, in India, enterprises hadresponsibility or liability for 84%, compared with 77% in the United States. As a byte travels from oneconsumer camera phone to another, at some point in its life, it passes through an enterprise-ownednetwork that must keep it secure and protect the privacy of the sender and the receiver. The same istrue for almost all bytes in the digital universe.This responsibility for information security and privacy protection, part of that 84% mentionedpreviously, for so much of the digital universe is one of the key challenges for the CIOs, datascientists and architects, governments, and enterprises driving the development of the digitaluniverse.IDC analysis of the information in Indias portion of the digital universe by category of informationindicates that 61% of the data might need security at some level (see Figure 3). India has the highestfraction of information that warrants protection compared with more developed countries/regions suchas the United States and Western Europe, where 25% and 46%, respectively, of total informationneeds protection. However, only 44% of all data that needs protection in India is protected, whichmakes data in India most vulnerable to security threats compared with data in other regions trackedin IDCs Digital Universe Study. It is no coincidence that India also spends the least in terms ofmanaging data — $0.87 per GB compared with $1.31 per GB in China, $1.77 per GB in the UnitedStates, and $2.49 per GB in Western Europe.©2013 IDC 3
  4. 4. As the years pass, the challenge is clear: to increase information security and privacy protection fastenough and competently enough to keep up with the 23-fold growth of Indias digital universe.Opportunity for Big DataOne of the ironies of the digital universe is that as soon as information is created or captured andenters the digital cosmos, much of it is lost. If a lot of that information is not stored (refer back toFigure 1), even more is not tracked or analyzed. Of course, not all of the information would be ofvalue if it were tracked, but certainly some of it would be.IDC estimates that in 2012, 36% of the information in Indias digital universe would be valuable wereit tagged and analyzed. We also estimate that less than half a percent is analyzed. We expect thepercentage of information in the regions digital universe that would be useful if tagged and analyzedwill be even a little bigger (37%) by 2020 (see Figure 4).Thats nearly a 25-fold growth of useful information, which should be an inspiration for the adoption ofBig Data technologies and practices. 4 ©2013 IDC
  5. 5. Impact of Cloud ComputingAs Indias digital universe grows more than 100% every two years — compared with single-digityearly growth in the number of IT professionals — the complexity of managing, securing, storing, andextracting value from it increases considerably. Dealing with this complexity implies a new economyof scale revolving around specialties — an incentive for cloud computing.Although cloud computing is in its early days, it is already having an impact on the digital universe.IDC estimates that in 2012, 22% of Indias digital universe was in some way "touched" by the cloud —stored, transmitted, or processed. By 2020, that percentage could be as high as 42% (see Figure 5).©2013 IDC 5
  6. 6. Call to ActionIndias digital universe in 2010 was bigger than that of the United States in 2005. Although it was lessthan 4% of the total digital universe back then, it will be twice that size by 2020. It is growing 67%faster than the U.S. digital universe. In 2020, Indias share of the digital universe will be many timesmore valuable than it is today — and many times more volatile. Many more bytes will needinformation security, many more systems will need real-time responses, and many more demands forreliability and speedy access will be made of the IT managers, CIOs, data scientists, and chiefsecurity officers who manage the actual digital universe.Technology will evolve — algorithms for automatically creating metadata for unstructured data; BigData software that enables analysis of large, diverse data sets; optimization software for real-timesystems; and, of course, information management, data deduplication, and cybersecurity tools.However, the right technology tools will be necessary but not sufficient for the taming of Indias digitaluniverse. It will take new management practices, user education, and savvy policies. This is wheretechnologists must rely on support from business units, government, and consumers, and it is likelyan area with bigger challenges than the technological realm.No country, no region, no company can halt the expansion of the digital universe. One can onlyprepare as best as possible. 6 ©2013 IDC
  7. 7. A B O U T T H I S P U B L I C A T I O NThis publication was produced by IDC Go-to-Market Services. The opinion, analysis, and research results presented hereinare drawn from more detailed research and analysis independently conducted and published by IDC, unless specific vendorsponsorship is noted. IDC Go-to-Market Services makes IDC content available in a wide range of formats for distribution byvarious companies. A license to distribute IDC content does not imply endorsement of or opinion about the licensee.C O P Y R I G H T A N D R E S T R I C T I O N SAny IDC information or reference to IDC that is to be used in advertising, press releases, or promotional materials requiresprior written approval from IDC. For permission requests, contact the GMS information line at 508-988-7610 or and/or localization of this document requires an additional license from IDC.For more information on IDC, visit For more information on IDC GMS, visit Headquarters: 5 Speen Street Framingham, MA 01701 USA P.508.872.8200 F.508.935.4015©2013 IDC 7