I recently attended HDS Analyst Day, which was held in Colorado Springs at the very lovely Broadmoor hotel. Colorado is very high, literally and figuratively. I took a train up Pikes Peak and got my first ever case of altitude sickness (felt like I was on a boat when I came back down). Fret not, I was fine. And no, I didn't go to a dispensary (although I totally would have, time permitting).
It was a small event, which I like way more than big events. All the HDS mucky mucks were there. Made it more personal. They are all genuinely nice people.
Here's the bottom line: HDS is in a primo spot to take advantage of the internet of things. Perhaps no one I can think of outside of GE is in as good a position.
That's not to say a zillion others aren't going to make a pile of dough when this phenomenon starts snowballing, but I can't think of anyone in a better overall spot.
Why? Because HDS is already in the middle of it. Hitachi, the $100B gianormous entity, just so happens to have invented the RFID tag, and had developed sensors for some of the world's most high tech gizmos. Hitachi makes the stuff that generates data (from machines and devices) - and HDS makes stuff that stores, analyzes, and leverages that data.
They make the $10B train systems in London. They make the $5B heavy equipment that builds highways. They make traffic control systems and security systems. They make everything.
In 15 years you aren't going to drive your own car. It's going to drive itself with you in it. Your car, a machine, is going to be way better at driving than you are. It's going to have a billion sensors in it, performing corrections a million times a second. It's going to react to other cars, that are also unmanned, right next to you. That car will have Hitachi stuff in it. The police are going to slow and move a thousand cars out of their way in 18 seconds, completely optimized for efficiency and purpose - without allowing one moron to stop traffic for 87 miles. The city of San Jose traffic control people are going to manage to keep the 101 completely optimized for traffic - keeping every car running at 56mph, with cars exactly 11' behind each other. Your commute will be cut in half. All because the internet of things will be some Jetsons-esque computer controlled real time data analysis system that we currently refer to as "life." Your insurance company is going to charge you less money, because the biggest cost/variable they have is YOU - because you do dumb things. Eliminate you, eliminate dumb things. Life is going to become more automated.
HDS sits in a spectacular position to take advantage of all this. Their big cheese, Jack Domme (current poster child for how to run an Hitachi division, which is crazy if you think about it), gets it. He spent a long time trying to get HDS out of the Borg that is Hitachi. Now he sees that he can leverage all of the assets the Borg has to offer. The guy that runs the Borg loves what the peeps at HDS are doing and is giving them the autonomy to take advantage.
There is no ONE winner as the internet of things evolves, there will be a lot of them. But HDS is sitting pretty for sure.
The other thing I learned is that HDS has two very very tall Sr. executives, and as such would most likely represent themselves well in the storage basketball league.
Oh, and if I lived there, I would be stoned constantly. But it wouldn't matter, because my car would be driving itself.