The rapid growth of data volume presents a real opportunity. It’s also a challenge that most organizations are either wrestling with now, or soon will be. As the cost of storing data continues to fall and cloud-hosted storage is increasingly adopted, more IT organizations are transitioning to a “save everything” or ”save more” approach. Accordingly, the question of what to do with all this “big data” comes up frequently in IT conversations.

However, big data by itself glosses over the real story. While most industry talk today focuses on the mechanics of data collection and storage, the opportunity lies in deriving actionable insights from the data you have. Data is an incredibly valuable asset whose value grows and grows as you’re able to gain insight from it.

To obtain actionable insights from data of every type and size – including unstructured data such as video files, social media streams and Web logs – you need a data platform that can store, manage and analyze all of your information. This includes business-critical relational databases and data warehouses, as well as data from inside the organization and in the cloud. But a modern data platform goes a step beyond, offering a set of tools to analyze both structured and unstructured data and deliver insights that everyone can easily interpret and act upon.

Infographic: In 2011, an estimated 1.8 zettabytes (1.8 trillion gigabytes) of information was created and replicated.
Infographic: In 2011, an estimated 1.8 zettabytes (1.8 trillion gigabytes) of information was created and replicated.
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Today, that modern platform is here, with our release to manufacturing of SQL Server 2012.  It’s more scalable, more reliable and delivers greater performance than ever before. It also includes Power View, our industry-leading business intelligence functionality. Power View provides users with a powerful interactive capability that transforms the exploration of any data, anywhere, into a more natural, immersive experience. Ultimately this encourages better decision-making – a significant benefit, with massive implications in today’s era of big data. Take a look at the numbers: Microsoft customers are already working with vast amounts of complex data to create insights that drive business value.

With today's release of SQL Server 2012, now more than ever Microsoft is helping customers manage any data, any size, anywhere, with a data platform and tools that can extract valuable insights that lead to action.  To learn more about SQL Server 2012, including the new features and benefits that are delivered in this release, visit our virtual launch event that kicks off tomorrow at www.SQLServerLaunch.com.

Posted by Ted Kummert
Corporate Vice President, Business Platform Division, Microsoft