No more cheap storage: After SSDs, manufacturers of mechanical drives are also raising prices

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SSD prices, which had been falling for a long time, started to rise from around September, which then intensified in the months of the new year. Unfortunately, this phenomenon will not remain isolated only in the field of electronic storage and in general products based on NAND Flash memory. Manufacturers of competing hard (or magnetic, mechanical, rotary…) drives have also announced that they will increase the prices of drives, even almost in a coordinated manner.

Pricing at WD…

This news came first from Western Digital. So it is not an estimate or a statistic of analysts, but an official statement. WD has sent a letter to large customers, according to which the company will have to proceed with price increases, some of which it has already started to implement, and some of which the company says will continue in the future.

This price increase has two factors – WD says that the demand for HDDs is higher than the company expected, which leads to their higher price in the market and thus allows WD to increase the price. In addition, there are allegedly factors that more or less force the price to rise – the company itself is said to have problems with the availability of components in the supply chain.

This is supposed to concern both NAND memory, where a significant increase in NAND prices has been a reality for a long time, but it is directly said that HDDs as well. Although the industry did not appear to be badly affected by the earthquake in Taiwan, there have been companies citing it as a factor forcing them to raise prices. It is questionable whether it is sometimes more of an excuse than real pressure, but it is difficult to judge.

The Taiwanese website TechNews.tw reports that HDD prices could rise by as much as 10% and at least by 5%. Fortunately, this would not be nearly as drastic as with HDDs, where the price increase has accumulated and already reaches a decent tens of percent compared to the previous price day.

…and Seagate

Now Seagate, which is the second major player in the HDD market, has announced a price increase in practically the same way. Again, this was in the form of a letter to major customers, in which the company announces that prices will be rising across its portfolio of hard drives with immediate effect.

Mechanical disks, HDD Western Digital (illustration)

Author: Western Digital

Seagate cites the same reasons as WD – supply chain problems, but the company also adds global inflation. Seagate also states that the demand for HDDs has increased to such an extent that the company cannot satisfy it.

According to both WD and Seagate, it is not easy to suddenly expand the production of HDDs, and this may also apply to the production of some components that are specific to HDDs, and thus probably few people want to invest in a larger volume of production. There is a risk that these lines will remain unused after this fluctuation in demand subsides.

Seagate, like WD, warns that while some price increases have already been made with immediate effect, additional rounds of price hikes will continue in the future.

Cloud24

It will probably be interesting to observe whether the third manufacturer, Toshiba, will also increase the price, or whether a similar “necessity” will not be seen on the market. In any case, it looks like this move by the two largest manufacturers will increase real prices for HDDs in stores, so equipping a NAS or buying an HDD for backup needs will unfortunately cost more money.

Sources: Tom’s Hardware (1, 2)

The article is in Czech

Tags: cheap storage SSDs manufacturers mechanical drives raising prices

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