Hard drive shipments expected to reach record level in 2012

By on October 1, 2012, 7:30 AM

It’s been a tough year for hard drive manufacturers following the devastating floods that crippled production factories in Thailand late last year. The resulting drive shortage was felt worldwide which led to a spike in prices for traditional spinning storage. A year later, however, the industry has fully recovered and is even expected to hit a record for total drives shipped in 2012.

Market research firm IHS iSuppli says hard drive shipments are expected to overcome a sluggish third quarter to reach 524 million in 2012, an increase of 4.3 percent over the 502.5 million units moved last year. Higher demand in the enterprise market as well as preparation for Windows 8 are cited as the two primary reasons for heightened shipments.

Hard drive shipments are expected to climb continually moving forward through at least 2016. iSuppli believes that by that time, shipments could hit 575.1 million units worldwide. It’s worth pointing out that the forecast only includes hard drives shipped to the PC compute segment. Drives used in automotive applications, DVR devices or as external storage weren't included.

It’s not all good news, however, as pricing is expected to remain elevated until sometime in 2014. As iSuppli pointed out earlier this year, manufacturers are being forced to charge more for hard drives for a number of reasons. Many had to relocate production to other regions while component costs increased as a direct result of the same flooding. It was estimated that manufacturers would have to spend around $1 billion to replace or repair damaged factories in Thailand.

User Comments: 9

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1 person liked this | Guest said:

How about the prices, when will they drop to record lows?

1 person liked this | Guest said:

...those companies used money from their insurance to pay for all the damage and relocating..so besides a large deductible, I doubt they shelled out 1 billion. Plus that 1 billion is probably ALL companies combined.

Modena said:

I feel like these companies milked the floods excuse enough. Yes surely prices should go up I mean demand increased while supply was low I understand this. But at the same time prices nearly tripled early this year. While they crawl to reach pre-flood prices by 2014? I don't know all the facts but it feels like they're screwing us immensely... Either way SSD prices are falling like crazy, so that's good at least.

vicky279 vicky279 said:

And what about the other manufacturers like Hitachi, Samsung etc. They couldn't all have had their hdd production in Thailand only. Everybody just wants a reason to inflate prices. And even if there are a record number of hdd to be sold in 2012, still it would take upto 2014 for the prices to come down? Even the 4tb drives are here but nobody can afford even a 3tb drive

valentyn0 valentyn0 said:

What a load of bollocks, MANUFACTURERS put the blame on the consumers instead of their own, I mean what the hell do we have to pay high price for a hdd when the price to manufacture is the same in China or Japan, not all factories are in Thailand, load of BS...

Guest said:

Thieves must store their digital filth somewhere.

and the two good people with BIG Steam libraries ;-)

VitalyT VitalyT said:

I think those are drug-induced predictions. By 2016 SSD-s will be so cheap, nobody in their right mind will be buying HDD-s anymore.

The last HDD I bought was 2 years ago, along with an SSD. My rig is due for an update, and I won't even look at HDD-s at this time.

SNGX1275 SNGX1275, TS Forces Special, said:

I had a hard drive scare a couple weeks ago and looked into buying a replacement drive, I was astonished at how high prices still are. You can't really find anything at 2TB for less than $100. 1.5TB around $90. My drives all passed long DST and long generic on Seatools and I haven't had any issues in a couple weeks. I still don't feel entirely safe, but I also don't have any extra money to spend on a replacement drive.

avoidz avoidz said:

I'll bet millions of people (myself included) have held off buying new drives till the crazy prices start dropping to pre-flood levels.

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