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NAS Drives Becoming More Affordable, Popular

ABI Research Finds Consumers Choosing Network Storage for Media Management As Devices Become Cheaper and More Powerful

While data backup has long been the traditional reason for an individual to purchase a network drive, more consumers today are looking to network attached storage (NAS) as a way to manage the exploding volume of digital media they are acquiring. From digital photos and video to content purchased online, consumers are looking not only to more traditional storage solutions such as USB hard drives, but to the more evolved NAS solutions that are becoming available at attractive price points.

“There are a number of competing alternatives for centralized storage and management of content,” says ABI Research director Michael Wolf. “ABI Research believes game consoles and Media Center PCs will outnumber NAS devices for media management by a large margin, but for those looking for low-cost content storage and management solutions, NAS will continue to grow as a viable option.”

Part of the reason for the growing interest in NAS devices is the technology’s rapidly declining price points. This decrease in pricing and increase in overall functionality has been driven by the emergence of NAS-on-chip processors from vendors such as Marvell and Agere. These devices are specifically designed to handle tasks for advanced media management. The NAS-on-chip market will grow from under 1 million units shipped in 2006 to over 7.5 million units shipped by 2011.

“Today, home network storage is definitely an advanced consumer market,” concludes Wolf. “However, we are increasingly seeing enthusiasts of such applications as digital photography and home video adopting NAS to manage their content, and we believe it’s only a matter of time before mainstream consumers look to NAS for entertainment media management as well.”

A recent ABI Research study, “Consumer Network Storage Market Analysis” (http://www.abiresearch.com/products/market_research/Consumer_Network_Storage_Mar ket_Analysis) examines the consumer market for consumer network attached storage. This report examines the varied form factors and the enabling silicon for the different products in this market. It forms part of the company’s Home Networking Research Service (http://www.abiresearch.com/products/service/Home_Networking_Research_Service), which also includes other Research Reports, Research Briefs, Market Data, Online Databases, ABI Insights, and analyst inquiry support. (Due to the length of the above URLs, it may be necessary to copy and paste these hyperlinks into your Internet browser’s URL address field.)

Founded in 1990 and headquartered in New York, ABI Research maintains global operations supporting annual research programs, intelligence services, and market reports in broadband and multimedia, RFID and M2M, wireless connectivity, mobile wireless, transportation, and emerging technologies. For information visit http://www.abiresearch.com, or call +1.516.624.2500.

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