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Whitepaper: Tape vs Object storage

This whitepaper explores how object storage stacks up against LTO tape for media archives and backup and looks at the opportunity costs of not leveraging the real-time data access of object storage to monetise existing data.

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We are living in an age of explosive data growth. IDC projects that the digital universe is growing 50% a year, doubling in size every 2 years. In media and entertainment, the growth is even faster as capacity-intensive formats such as 4K, 8K, and 360/VR gain traction. Fortunately, new trends in data storage are making it easier to stay ahead of the curve.

Historically, many studios and broadcasters have relied on LTO tape as the most economical option for long-term media archiving and backup — but that is beginning to change. The increasing costs of maintaining and expanding aging tape libraries are prompting many businesses to explore other options. At the same, the costs of more modern and flexible solutions like object storage now make them a cost-effective alternative to LTO tape.

In this paper, we will examine how object storage stacks up against LTO tape for media archives and backup. In addition to a detailed total cost of ownership (TCO) analysis covering both capital and operational expenses, this paper will look at the opportunity costs of not leveraging the real-time data access of object storage to monetise existing data.

Finally, we will demonstrate the validity of the analysis with a real-world case study of a longstanding network TV show that made the switch from tape to object storage.

The limitations of tape storage go way beyond its lack of scalability. Data that isn’t searchable is becoming a tangible liability for businesses, and one that will only become larger with advances in AI and machine learning. – BCS Bureau

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