The next step, Reinsel said, is to enable companies to better extract value out of their mountains of data, via big data analytics .
"This is where real opportunities lie, and where some folks may miss the boat. As soon as big data success stories are advertised and people see that there is gold in their data ... then you will find more companies desiring to put more data online," he said.
But if all a company does is keep storing more data, and are unsuccessful at finding the gold in it, then there will be little if any return on investments in storage and management technology, he added.
Lucas Mearian covers storage, disaster recovery and business continuity, financial services infrastructure and health care IT for Computerworld. Follow Lucas on Twitter at @lucasmearian, or subscribe to Lucas's RSS feed. His email address is firstname.lastname@example.org. Read more about storage in Computerworld's Storage Topic Center.