With Western Digital's competitors pushing hard to increase production, the market itself has found a stabilising point for hard drives. Well, they couldn't keep going up forever. Could they? KitGuru does a quick Scan and comes back with good news.
Back on 3rd November, KitGuru brought you news that the humble 1TB drive was batting way above its normal price point in the wake of the Thai floods that destroyed over 40% of Western Digital's capacity. At that stage, drives which had been less than £50 only a short time early, were now nudging the £100 mark.
The day after that report, we heard from several UK retail experts – who were predicting that prices would carry on rising – and it would be ‘next summer‘ before hard drive price finally dipped below the level they reached in summer 2011.
Sure enough, the regular 1TB drive managed to reach £108, while at the same time corporate customers were getting battered with price tags around the £180 mark.
Now it seems that – as the floods subside – we're seeing some sanity return to the market. Checking the 1TB price this morning, we see that 1 TB drive from Korean-based Samsung is now down to £103. It's only a drop of £4 or so from the peak price seen, but it's a good step in the right direction.
Alongside increased production efforts from Western Digital's competitors, it seems that the market could not take many more increases. We heard from sources inside retail giant John Lewis, that customers had given up and pulled right back. It seems that the buyers at John Lewis have told the hard drive manufacturers to ‘Come back when the pricing makes sense', even though it means a drop in HDD revenues of around 80%, year on year, for the quarter.
We have also heard that SSD manufacturers have enjoyed a boost in sales of around 100%. Sure, the numbers won't be anywhere near as large as they are for traditional hard drives – but going with an SSD from OCZ, AData or Kingston in your new system (and adding a cheap 2TB drive later, when the prices dip back down) makes sense.
KitGuru says: Common sense has started to prevail. Hard drives are useful, but do you really need a 1TB drive for £180 when you can have a substantial SSD for less – and add the hard drive later. Make your world a faster place, use an SSD this Xmas and win the race.
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