LIVE FROM HUAWEI DATA FORUM, BERLIN: Huawei unveiled equipment designed to optimise data storage at a time when generative AI (genAI) has increased industry demands for more processing power, launching the OceanStor A800 system and an energy-efficient Solid-State Drive (SSD) for data centres.

During the company’s Innovative Data Infrastructure conference, president of Huawei Data Storage Product Line Peter Zhou (pictured) argued genAI has transformed the ways organisations process and manage data, as the technology enables various “applications that are very different from what we’ve had before”.

“We need a bigger amount of data with different paradigms to support [these applications],” which has prompted questions around power consumption, according to Zhou, who highlighted the industry is faced with a need to store an ever-larger amount of data while having to keep a sustainable operation.

The executive cited research which found 50 per cent of data centre power is consumed by training genAI. By 2026, the research revealed the energy used for data centres will be equivalent to Japan’s annual energy consumption.

Data awakening
“AI models are power hungry”, Zhou said, adding “now is the right time to define a next-generation data storage”.

Huawei believes its “data awakening” product line may be the answer: the OceanStor A800 hardware is promoted as a high-performance storage engine with an “embedded ransomware protection” and offers the “lowest power consumption” in the market.

It can also increase AI clustering utilisation – the process of categorising datasets into subgroups – by 30 per cent, said Zhou.

In a document detailing specs, the A800, which is an addition to Huawei’s OceanStor family, can apparently deliver high bandwidth and input/output operations per second “four and eight times better” than data storage systems designed by competitors.

Meanwhile, its new 128-terabyte “high-capacity SSD” was built to cut the power consumption in data centres.

It consumes 88 per cent less storage space and 92 per cent less energy than other SSDs by “peer vendors”, making the technology part of storage innovations that are “driving sustainable development”, said Huawei.