Media Stats Report 2021

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SaaS Media Management Adoption Increased as Remote Teams Used More Cloud Storage

  • In 2020, the hybrid cloud split for iconik data was 64.6% cloud and 35.4% on-premise. This was an 11.6% rise in cloud data.
  • 12.1 PB of data was added to the cloud in 2020, an increase of 490%.
  • Amazon S3 ranks first in data storage with 37.8% of iconik’s data. It grew 1009% in 2020.
  • Teams of 6-20 people adopted SaaS media management at a greater rate than any other size. iconik customers of this size grew 171%.
  • The M&E space continued to lead in the adoption of SaaS media management. It represented 62% of the iconik customer base in 2020.
  • Video represents 63% of iconik’s data, down 14.7% from 2019.

The Data Story Continues

Deep in the data, there’s a story. In our last Media Stats report, the story told us how Covid-19 had changed how people manage media. They relied more on cloud solutions at home than on hardware in the workplace.

At the end of 2020, more details of this story emerged.

Remote Teams Adopted SaaS Media Management to Manage More Cloud Content

A global health crisis made remote work a necessity. Organizations needed to access their media off-site, and many of them used new or existing cloud storage for this. The hybrid cloud allowed organizations to manage both cloud and on-premise storage, but cloud demand was higher in 2020—storing 11.8% more of the total data compared to the previous year.

Large media libraries needed to be organized for efficient productions and collaboration. More teams used SaaS media management to do this in 2020.

Media management in the hybrid cloud

2020 Brought Massive Growth and Change to Cloud Storage

The rise in cloud data translated to 12.1 PB more content in the cloud— 490% more since 2019. That content was stored with many cloud storage services, but it looked very different than the year before.

In 2020 Amazon S3 Cloud Storage rose from #3 to the #1 storage provider. To do this, S3 grew an amazing 1009% to surpass IBM Cloud Storage, the #1 provider in 2019, and even the ISG. The ISG manages on-premise storage and accounts for nearly 33% of all data stored in iconik.

Backblaze B2 cloud storage also had impressive growth with a 933% increase. Our case studies for COMPLEX Networks and THEMA offer more background about this growth.

individual growth for cloud storage providers

Here is how the 22.7 petabytes of iconik data was stored in 2020

Smaller Teams Adopted SaaS Media Management More

Smaller teams took the lead in adopting SaaS media management. With the hybrid cloud, they could grow their media operations more rapidly with scalable resources in the cloud. Large organizations required more time to make the change.

iconik adoption by team size

Industry Adoption of the Hybrid Cloud Was Consistent

Media centric industries have always utilized media management the most, but non-traditional industries are finding their need for this too. SaaS solutions have made media management more accessible for everyone. Customer industries have become more diverse these past years, but 2020 did not have a great effect on this.

Industry data may need a moment to load

iconik 2020 Data

In 2020, media teams from 12 industries used SaaS media management to manage content across multiple storage points, manage video projects online, facilitate collaboration around video, and edit video remotely. All this resulted in a massive wave of data.

API Calls to iconik

Media Assets Rose with Video at the Helm

As teams became decentralized, they needed to make their media accessible for their organization. This meant they either had to add new content to cloud storage, or index existing cloud and on-premise storage in the cloud to make it searchable.

The result was a 477% rise in iconik assets.

What kind of assets were managed in 2020? In the chart below, you’ll see how many asset types were managed in iconik and how much data that created. Video remains the most common type of asset managed by SaaS media management services.

There have been big changes in video over the years, but 2020 video trends did not change much from 2019. There was more new video in 2020 which decreased the impact of older content on overall video statistics.


SaaS media management solutions were already gaining traction in 2019. The events of 2020 only accelerated the adoption. Global brands and small production teams used the same solutions for media management because SaaS business models made products like iconik more accessible. Accessibility was also the reason why decentralized organizations needed the cloud to store more of their media in 2020.

As the data has grown, so has our commitment to those who depend on iconik. We’ve been honored to serve our customers this year.

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Media Stats Methodology

What assets are counted? Only original assets added by our customers will be counted in our data—proxy and other files are excluded.

Is an asset the same as a file? No, an asset is a container that consists of at least two files. A single asset can include:

How are industries defined? All industries are defined by the GICS model.

How do you track trends over time? All charts with a time axis have been generated using only files with the creation date set in the XMP or EXIF metadata. Files without a creation date have been omitted.