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Merger boosts Western Digital's market share to 50%

Posted: 20 Apr 2011 ?? ?Print Version ?Bookmark and Share

Keywords:hard disk drive? production? sales? storage?

The hard disk drive (HDD) industry is more than 50 years old. Over that time period, it has faced a lot of turmoil, uncertainty, price volatility, demand and supply imbalances, technological challenges, limitations to its technological limits, etc.

More recently, however, the HDD market has consolidated itself to just a handful of players and with the recent announcement of Western Digital's plans to purchase Hitachi Global Storage Technologies (GST) there will be only four primary vendors in the HDD industry: Samsung, Seagate, Toshiba, and Western Digital. Combine Western Digital's 2010 share with Hitachi's and it approaches 50 percent of total available market for units shipped, says In-Stat.

"Western Digital's acquisition of Hitachi GST further consolidates the hard drive industry and is certainly a positive move for Western Digital," says Norm Bogen, VP of research at In-Stat. "It jump starts WD's penetration into the Enterprise market where its share prior to the acquisition was 1 percent and after it will be 24 percent, second only to Seagate."

Recent research by In-Stat found the following:

???Before the acquisition, the top HDD vendors include Hitachi GST, Samsung, Seagate, Toshiba, and Western Digital. Western Digital had overtaken Seagate as the largest HDD manufacturer for the first half of 2010.
???HDDs have maintained a strong competitive position in many applications against SSDs (solid state drives), providing storage at a tenth of the price on a cost/megabit basis.
???Drive capacities are growing at a rate of 40 percent per year.
???The industry is expected to cross the 1Tb/sq. inch threshold in the 2012C2013 timeframe.
???The demand for 2.5-inch mobile/portable drives keeps growing at a faster pace and has outstripped the TAM for desktop drives.
???Cloud storage shifts some of the requirements for massive storage on a PC device to one in the Cloud with companies like Amazon, Microsoft, and Google.

A recent In-Stat research,"Worldwide Hard Disk Drive Market by Application," examines the HDD industry from a brief past and then forecasts the state of the industry in the next five years (2010 through 2015) including: volume shipments; industry revenue; average sales price; areal density; review and commentary on the systems market; and review and commentary on SSDs traction in the storage space.

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