"huge volume of data" or "huge volumes of data"
Should I use a singular form or a plural form?
Search in Google results in 178,000 hits vs 256,000 hits.
English Language & Usage Stack Exchange is a question and answer site for linguists, etymologists, and serious English language enthusiasts. It only takes a minute to sign up.Sign up to join this community
It depends whether you are speaking generally or specifically.
If you are speaking in a general way, then in the same way that we say 'we handle huge cats', with cats in the plural, you would say "we handle huge volumes of data".
If you are speaking specifically, about one project for example, the in the same way that you would say 'we handled a huge cat' you would say "we handled a huge volume of data".
"Huge volume" implies that there is simply a lot of data. A huge, torrential deluge of data. Data, data, everywhere. But not compartmentalized, necessarily - just a lot of it.
"Huge volumes", though, implies that there are several volumes - sets, categories, groupings - that each contains a huge amount of data.
You didn't specify if this is in a professional situation. Informally either is fine, as by using the word huge implies general conversation with non-precise terms. In technical circles you would be taken more seriously by using more specific terms. Not that you have to account for every byte but you can talk about rough size, growth factor, data retention and so forth. Huge can mean different things to different people. A desktop computer user would consider a hundred gigabytes as huge whereas in a data centre talk about terrabytes of data is usual.