The best NoSQL database options for the enterprise

NoSQL databases are an increasingly compelling storage alternative to the established database management system (DBMS)

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The NoSQL database market has become a crowded space in recent years as companies compete for a growing developer desire for highly scalable and flexible storage to deal with the proliferation of unstructured data and increasingly complex web applications. As a result the NoSQL market is expected to reach $4.2 billion globally by 2020, according to Allied Market Research.

The term was coined by Italian computer scientist Carlo Strozzi in 1998 to describe a lightweight relational database he was developing without a SQL interface.

[Read next: The 12 best cloud-based relational database options for the enterprise]

The predicted demise of SQL still hasn't come to pass, and industry giants Oracle, Microsoft and IBM still dominate the database management system (DBMS) market. There are however now a range of NoSQL alternatives to the established SQL vendors. Here's our pick of them, in no particular order: