Big data is a big deal. Whether you know it or not, it’s a huge part of your life.
Did you use a GPS on your way to work today? How many tweets did you pen and publish before lunch? Can you recall how many emails you opened and replied to? All these actions are bits of data unknowingly created but nonetheless floating in the ether of the newly-born digital age.
Big data is a term that describes just what its name implies: the vast, unending deluge of both structured and unstructured data we are inundated with en masse. According to IBM, we create a staggering 2.5 quintillion bytes of data every single day.
The rate in which we are producing data rises exponentially every year, so much so that 90 per cent of the data we’ve made has been created in the last two years alone as more and more companies start to get online and create their websites and online presence, adding to the growing number of companies that produce and share more and more data on a regular basis. We’ve been producing massive amounts of data faster than we can analyze it. We must find ways to cope with the sheer volume of data the age of the Internet has spawned and develop ways to analyze it.
We are beginning to see businesses tap into the power of harnessing big data in order to assess trends, enhance decision-making processes and further all sorts of research. People are starting to notice the astonishingly useful applications of collating unimaginably large data sets. With this realization, another soon follows: big data has the capability to generate a profusion of wealth.
Here’s the top three reasons you should invest in big data:
1. It’s expected to experience a surge of investment
Tech giants like Amazon, Google and Microsoft are already fully invested in the future of big data. IBM, too, is already on the path to helping monetize and mine it. In the very near future, more than just Silicon Valley behemoths will be participating in the race to perfect how we interact with and exchange it.
According to a Gartner report released in 2015, it was projected that 75 per cent of businesses would invest (or plan to invest) in big data over the next two years. Big data grew by 25 per cent in 2015 alone. In 2016, the sector secured more than $1 billion in funding, vastly outperforming the previous year.
2. Big data will become ubiquitous
Big data itself is already ubiquitous. Analysis, on the other hand, is still lagging behind. Only a fraction of the data we’re producing is currently being analyzed. This is a huge missed opportunity because the analysis of big data allows for businesses to experience:
- Reduction in costs
- Reduction in time allocation
- Optimized product development and deployment
- More informed decision-making
We won’t keep missing out on these benefits for long, however, especially considering the colossal amount of data the Internet of Things is set to produce. As we begin to better understand our relationship with big data and it becomes more accessible, companies are developing better ways to effectively mine and analyze it. It’s little wonder: we can ill afford to ignore the data at our fingertips for much longer as its analysis could be the key to pressing issues and projects like furthering cyber security protections and rapidly progressing cancer research.
3. Its projected market growth is astounding
The International Data Corporation (IDC) forecasts that by the year 2020, the big data and business analytics market will balloon to $203 billion. For context, IDC also accurately predicted that the revenue from the sector would hit $130 billion by the end of 2016.
Big data is growing at an alarming clip – almost as alarming as our creation of the vast data itself. Industries like banking and manufacturing, replete with very large workforces and unoptimized processes, are aggressively pushing these technologies forward. Dan Vesset, Group Vice President of Analytics and Information, added to IDC’s report, “The availability of data, a new generation of technology, and a cultural shift toward data-driven decision making continue to drive demand for big data and analytics technology and services.”
Big data is only going to get bigger as time goes by. We’re experiencing a sea change in the way things are done, from analyzing financial markets to eliminating cyber criminality, all of which is being promulgated by businesses adopting big data analysis. All signs point to the industry’s extreme (and inevitable) growth. Seeing as big data will most certainly see a surge in investment soon, it’d be wise to begin researching your options, such as consulting a data analysis expert, and start the process of pouring some of your own capital into the burgeoning technologies and companies utilizing big data.