The Indian data storage market has witnessed robust growth in the past few years as the amount of data generated per day is huge. In the rapidly evolving tech world, data storage remains the key challenge for end-users, SMEs and enterprises. They all are adopting innovative storage devices such as SSDs for its unparalleled performances. There has been a huge shift in new storage solutions among all major industries that are switching to newer storage solutions instead of traditional HDDs. The market players who are serving in this domain see huge potential and leaving no stone unturned in capitalizing these immense opportunities. Rajeev Ranjan, Editor & Publisher, Digital Terminal recently interacted with Vishal Parekh, Marketing Director, Kingston Technology & HyperX, APAC Region – India & Philippines, to get insights about the Indian storage market growth, new trends and company’s overall business plans. Read below the excerpts-
Mr. Rajeev: What is your core strength as a leader in the Indian storage market? What are the key driving forces behind your growth?
Mr. Vishal: Kingston Technology is a lifestyle technology brand that is all around us, be it USBs, SSDs, Memory, or be it inside your Smartphones, Wearables and other Embedded devices. The key driver for our business growth is the strong channel relations which is backed by Product Quality, Service and Strategic promotions. Also, we believe it is also our dedication to improve continuously in terms of product design, service and customer experience, which is why the industry looks up to us. We take pride in being able to set the bar higher for industry standards every time.
Mr. Rajeev: Which emerging trends are shaping the overall storage market growth in India?
Mr. Vishal: The Indian Data storage industry as we know it today will look quite different in the coming decade as technological innovations will redefine the way storage is provisioned, deployed, managed and consumed. In the last year alone, we have observed our SSDs getting superb adoption rates in almost all market segments ranging from consumer to corporate to SME to enterprises. Technologically SSDs have become more suitable for not just network environments like servers, databanks, etc. but it now offers entry level product lines that offer aspiring end user to upgrade his notebook from a traditional HDD to high-performance Solid-State Drive. Kingston offers a complete profile of SSD that suits corporates, system builders and assemblers, enthusiasts and end users. Speaking of usage trends, earlier there was a shift in terms of higher transfer speeds. In due course of time, the trends were more skewed towards preferring higher capacity drives. India, being a value driven country, is a good market for us.
Also, Data Storage has been maturing significantly in India and with the increasing capacities and reduction in prices, people have begun to recognize the advantages of using Flash storage. To nurture the growth of the SSDs, we are purposefully investing to provide SSDs with the latest technology at an affordable price. In the last few years, we successfully worked towards mainstreaming the 3D NAND and NVMe technologies by offering it at a friendlier price. They are also making conscious efforts to educate corporate and individuals about the importance of quality and features of secured storage in order to help them in choosing the right solution for their technical needs. Soon, SSD will become an industry standard as it will surpass the capacity limits and augment durability in a big way.
Mr. Rajeev: What is the major cause behind the increasing adoption of SSDs among common consumers?
Mr. Vishal: In India, SSDs have made considerable progress as far as understanding the innovation and its reception is concerned. SSDs are the characteristic advancement past HDDs and offer imperative components like high speeds, high information security, better strength, higher portability, better reliability and a steady framework. It is because of this steadfast reliability that the consumers are embracing this technology with open arms. They will need the larger and faster SSD to manage their data. Such impressive features in SSD also extended battery life for computing devices like PCs, laptops, making it a popular option among consumers. The rise in the number of gamers requiring super-fast and smooth access is also an added factor. Besides this, Digitalization has also created a climate conducive for gamers. They, too, require SSDs to cope with their data overload.
Mr. Rajeev: How do you see the growing demand for SSD solutions among verticals like media and entertainment?
Mr. Vishal: If we look at the current industry, there are growing levels of data consumption and analysis. There are dedicated media servers used for providing most services in B2B and B2C. Today’s on-demand, visually-driven culture is more plugged into the media and entertainment than ever before. New ways to consume and enjoy media is on the rise and becoming more challenging for brands with older data storage architecture.
As a global leader, we do invest our energies to educate corporates and brands to make the best use of upcoming Flash Storage technologies for not just faster speeds, but also to reduce system lags, maintenance costs and the more expensive real estate footprints. This industry needs SSDs and we are doing our bit to bring a change in the lives of the executives that can work lesser hours for the same productivity. At events like Broadcast India and India Film Project, we usually get an amazing response from the content creators and production houses, as they easily see potential growth in this improvement.
To cater these, Kingston offers many products, but we have seen higher enquiries from consumers for our A2000, KC2000 and the new Q500 SSDs to improve the responsiveness existing systems with incredible boot, loading and transfer times compared to mechanical hard drives.
Mr. Rajeev: How do you work with your channel to reach potential customers in this segment? How do you educate your partners to work with more efficiency?
Mr. Vishal: Kingston has always believed in extending its support to our channel network and create benefits for the end users. Be it availability, a good computing or gaming user experience, high quality products, or our excellent after sales service, we have fine-tuned our engagements according to the evolving needs of both, our partners and the end users. With our definite and competitive business strategies in 2019, part of our focus area will involve channel engagement and empowerment activities, developing our network and rapidly increasing channel strength to establish a strong foothold in various regional markets. Our business is distributed in different regions of India and requires effective communication from our partners with consumers. To illustrate an enhanced communication model, we are looking forward to conducting more education campaigns such as Kingston Retail Super Star, which can contribute majorly towards their growth. We also empower our channel network with incentive schemes and exceptional after sales support. I believe as we progress in 2020, we will only see a better picture with numerous growth prospects.
Mr. Rajeev: How do you assure excellent service support to your loyal customers?
Mr. Vishal: Service is the lifeblood of any organization, good service is all about enhancing customer experience and turning them into advocates. India is an important market to consider this aspect as a pain point. To offer an exemplary after sales service, we have collaborated with RP Tech as our National Service partner. Next, with brisk automation comes minimized customer engagements and we have had this process for quite some time. It is a win-win situation where the customer simply notifies us of a problem and is tended to by our service partners with the least delay possible. We not only provide the best quality at the best price but also provide one of the best customer service support to customers and to the channel. Technology market is very competitive, and our strong service is practically our USP. In the time to come, we will focus our energies and investments to make a positive impact.