The emergence of RaaS (Recovery-as-a-Service) has upended the Data Protection market, with backup becoming merely table stakes in a crowded multi-vendor environment.

Customers are no longer content with the status quo of long recovery times imposed by previous generation backup technology. Instead they demand both instant recovery and the ability to unlock value from data backed up both onsite on their datacenters and offsite in RaaS Provider Clouds.

On the former vector, we’ve seen customers buying in strongly to benefits of spinning up instant onsite / cloud failovers. Through the clever use of virtualization, RaaS solutions have effectively eliminated downtime-associated downed servers, laptops and PCs, since spinning up a failover VM of those devices from the latest Recovery Point is a point-and-click affair. In many cases, the actual reconstitution of the original device can go on in parallel even as the failover VM continues to run mission-critical software.

On the latter vector, customers think: “Hey – this is my data and I ought to be able to do something more interesting with it than just backing it up.” This latter need has resulted in an explosion of apps that can mine this backed up data for things such as e-Discovery, File Sync/Sharing, Granular Search and Recovery of Mailbox content etc.

The key thing is a fundamental mindset shift in the way customers look at BDR as being ‘the cost of doing business,’ to something that can provide business-enhancing value in its own right. Vendors that meet this need have a huge head start over vanilla BDR providers.

Next time, we’ll talk about how Axcient’s all-new Granular Mailbox Recovery for Microsoft Exchange plays right into the customer needs articulated above.

Venkatesh Iyer is a Senior Product Manager at Axcient. When not thinking up the next cool product idea, he divides eyeball time between Netflix and Amazon Prime, bemoaning for instance that “Sherlock” runs a mere three episodes per season, giving truth to the Scarcity Principle.

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