Managing the Media Tidal Wave: Backlight iconik’s 2024 Media Report

A decorative image showing several types of files falling into the a cloud with the Backblaze logo on it.

Everyone knows we’re living through an exceptional time when it comes to media production: Every day we experience a tidal wave of content—social video, virtual reality (VR) and augmented reality (AR) gaming, 10K sports footage, every streaming option imaginable—crashing down on us.

Two eye popping stats underscore that this perception is real: In December, Netflix shared that its users streamed close to 100 billion hours of content on its platform during the first half of 2023. At the beginning of 2024, YouTube revealed that its users watch one billion hours of video daily. 

It’s hard to make sense of that volume of content, it’s even harder to understand how it’s produced. Imagine the armies of people and types of programs required to capture, ingest, transcode, store, tag, edit, distribute, and archive all of it. Managing that content means touching every stage, start to finish, of the production process through the data lifecycle. 

A photo showing a woman surrounded by glistening raindrops, some of which transform into media icons.

To further complicate things, the modern production person’s workflow is nothing close to linear. They have to deal with:

  • A diversity of inputs: Content is pouring in from various sources. Keeping track of all this content, ensuring its quality, and organizing it effectively can feel like trying to catch a waterfall in a teacup. 
  • A variety of formats and file types: Each platform or device may require a different format or resolution, making it difficult to maintain consistency across the board and adding another layer of complexity.
  • Managing metadata, or indexing and tagging: With so much content flying around, ensuring that each file is properly tagged with relevant information is crucial for easy retrieval and management. However, manually inputting metadata for every piece of media can be time-consuming and prone to errors.
  • Remote and in-person collaboration: With team members spread across different locations, coordinating efforts and maintaining version control can be a headache.
  • Storage and scalability: As the volume of media grows, so does the need for storage space. Finding a solution that can accommodate this growth without breaking the bank can be tough.

While many companies are jumping in to provide tools to manage this tidal wave of content, one company, Backlight iconik, differentiates itself by providing industry-leading tools and offering public media reports on the state of media data today.

Backlight iconik’s 2024 Media Stats Report

Since 2018, iconik has provided a cloud-based media asset management (MAM) tool to help production professionals tame the insanity of modern content development. For the past four years, they’ve also provided an annual Media Stats report to help the industry understand the type of media being developed and distributed, as well as where and how it’s stored. (In 2022, Backlight, a global media technology, acquired iconik, hence the name change.) If you want the full story, please check out Backlight iconik’s 2024 Media Stats Report,

As cloud storage specialists here at Backblaze (and, lovers of stats ourselves), we would like to dig into their stats on storage and offer our own take here for you today.

2024 Media Storage Trend: The Content Tidal Wave Is Not a Mirage

According to Backlight iconik’s Media Stats Report, iconik’s data exploded to 152PB, shooting up by a whopping 57%—that’s 53PB more than in 2023. To put it in perspective, that’s roughly 6TB of fresh data pouring in every hour. This surge in data can be attributed to both new customers integrating their archives with iconik and existing customers ramping up their usage.

2024 Media Storage Trend: Audio on the Rise

An interesting find in their study was the difference between audio and video asset growth. Iconik is now managing 328 years of video (up 41% YoY) and 208 years of audio (up 50% YoY).

A decorative display of media stats from iconik's media report. The title reads Asset Duration. On the left, a blue circle displays the words 328 years of video, which represents 41% growth year on year. On the right, an orange circle contains the words 208 years of audio, which represents 50% growth year on year.
Note that “duration” in this context is measuring the total hours of runtime for each file. Source.

Over the last year, the growth of audio assets managed by Backlight iconik has surged, surpassing that of video, with a staggering 1,700 hours being added daily. They believe this surge is closely tied to the remarkable expansion of both the podcasting and audiobook markets in recent years. The global podcast market ballooned to $17.9 billion in 2023 and is forecasted to soar to $144 billion by 2032. Similarly, the audiobook market is projected to hit $35 billion by 2030, with expected revenue of $35.05 billion in the same year. While audio files are smaller than video files by far, it’s reasonable to anticipate a continued upward trajectory for audio assets across the media and entertainment landscape.

2024 Trend: The Shift to Cloud Storage for Cost-Effective Storage and Collaboration

According to Backlight iconik’s 2024 Media Stats Report, the trend toward cloud storage is definitely on the rise as the increased competition in the market and move away from hyperscalers drive more reasonable pricing. Companies are opting to transition to the cloud at their own speed, and hybrid cloud setups give them the freedom to shift assets as needed to improve things like performance, ease of access, security, and meeting regulatory requirements.

Get Ahead of the Wave: Pair iconik With Modern Cloud Storage Today

The reasons so many media professionals are moving to cloud are relatively simple: Cloud workflows enable enhanced collaboration and flexibility, greater cost predictability, and heightened security and management capabilities. And often, all of the above is possible at a lower total cost than legacy solutions.

Pairing Backlight iconik and Backblaze provides a simple solution for users to manage, collaborate, and store media projects easily. By integrating with iconik, Backblaze boosts workflow effectiveness, delivering a strong cloud-based MAM system that allows thorough management of Backblaze B2 Cloud Storage data right from a web browser.

Customer Story: How One Streaming Company Tackled Remote Content Workflows With Backblaze and Backlight iconik

When Goalcast, the empowering media company, decided to dive into making their own content, they realized their current setup just wasn’t cutting it. With their team spread out all over the place, they needed an easy way to get footage, access videos from anywhere, and keep a stash of finished files ready to jazz up for YouTube, Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat, TikTok, and the Goalcast OTT app. 

Goalcast combined LucidLink’s cloud-based workflows, iconik’s media asset manager and uploader features, and Backblaze B2 Cloud Storage. The integration between iconik, LucidLink, and Backblaze creates a slick media workflow. The content crew uploads raw footage straight into iconik, tossing in key details. Original files zip into Goalcast’s Backblaze B2 Bucket automatically, while edited versions are up for grabs via LucidLink. After the editing magic, final assets kick back into Backblaze B2.

The integration and partnership means endless possibilities for Goalcast. They’re saving around 150 hours a month in grunt work and stress. Now, they don’t have to fret about where footage hides or how to snag it—it’s all securely stored in Backblaze, ready for anyone on the team to grab, no matter where they’re working from.

You can get lost in the weeds of tech companies and storage solutions. It can hurt your brain. The sweet spot is these three—iconik, LucidLink, and Backblaze—and how they work together.

—Dan Schiffmacher, Production Operations Manager, Goalcast

2024 Media Mega Trend

Looking at Backlight iconik’s numbers and forecasts from a 25,000 foot vantage point makes one thing painfully clear: Effective media management and storage are going to be absolutely crucial for media teams to succeed in the future landscape of production. Dive deeper into how Backblaze and Backlight iconik can support you now and down the road, ensuring seamless media management, and affordable storage, that creates easy, stress-free expansion as your data continues to grow. 

Already have iconik and want to get started with Backblaze? Click here. 


About Jennifer Newman

Jen Newman is the partner marketing director for Backblaze. She has an extensive background in data protection software and storage, both on-premises and in the cloud. She started her IT career in sales, then became a solutions marketing and competitive intelligence guru before taking on the partner realm. Outside the business world, Jen is a hockey mom, weightlifter, and always on the go. Connect with Jen on LinkedIn and follow her on Twitter.