5G will bring a data tsunami to Australian SMEs. Can your data management system handle it?

The 5G rollout in Australia continues to hit new milestones.

The most recent milestone is the announcement that Telstra’s 5G network has reached 75% of all Australians, including those in regional centres and rural areas.

Most SMEs are looking to boost productivity that will come with 5G’s increased speed and bandwidth. But they’re also wondering how they’ll handle the flood of data that 5G will bring.

5G will usher in explosive data growth because the increased speed and lower latency of 5G will power many next-generation applications, thus much higher data use.

The Ericsson Mobility Report asserts that monthly mobile data usage is predicted to skyrocket to 45 gigabytes per smartphone by the calendar year 2025.

The trillion-dollar question is, “How will all that data be stored and protected?” What architectures can SMEs create to successfully leverage this data to their advantage?

New data governance policies are needed

Businesses will need governance policies to determine what data is mission-critical and needs to be saved and protected, versus what data is temporary and can be quickly discarded.

Not all data is equal, and companies need a system to separate valuable data what is not. Many have no such system yet traditional backup and recovery teams tend to err on caution.

They operate on the principle that you can’t go wrong by backing up everything. So, they take a one-size-fits-all approach to their data and back up all of it.

While this works, sort of, in an environment where companies generate a linear amount of data because they can manage their storage expenses, it won’t work in the 5G era.

A one-size-fits-all policy is not feasible in an environment where the amount of data you need to store and protect increases exponentially. If companies treat all their data the same, the sheer cost of storing it all will drive some businesses into bankruptcy.

Think about it. What business can afford to allocate an ever-expanding chunk of its budget to data storage alone? It’s just not a sustainable approach from a cost perspective.

New data management solutions will help

SMEs need to create policies that enable them to store their data in the most price-optimal way. They can, for example use the more expensive tier-one storage for mission-critical data that needs to be accessed frequently and recovered quickly.

While for less important data, they can rely on more cost-effective alternatives. The trick is to quickly determine which pieces of data are more important than others.

Fortunately, there is a new generation of data management solutions that come packed with intelligence to help you understand which data is worth saving and which is expendable.

Based on how frequently you’re going to use the data and how critical it is, you can then decide whether to put it in primary storage or lower-cost secondary storage.

By moving to such an intelligent and dynamic data management and protection model, organisations can keep their storage costs under control in the 5G era.

Companies are rolling out various use cases for 5G. Some of these are immersive technologies like virtual reality or the real-time monitoring and remote control of connected equipment.

Companies will find comfort in knowing that their data storage capabilities are up to the task.

Companies that act now will win

With 5G ramping up, it’s time for every SME to ask itself whether it is truly ready for the explosion of data that will come with 5G. Companies currently using a one-size-fits-all approach to data storage and management are probably not ready for the data explosion.

Companies that use an intelligent, multi-tier strategy to sort and prioritise data are positioned to unleash the potential of 5G and gain an edge over their competitors going forward.

Leo Lynch is Director, Asia Pacific for StorageCraft, an Arcserve Company. With over 30 years of channel experience, Leo is focused on partner-centric growth in one of the fastest growing regions in the IT market.