Talk about beating heads against brick walls... Hard disk drive unit shipments slowly spinning down

This is the age of the SSD

Disk drive shipments sank from 104.8 million in Q4 of 2017 to 88-89 million in the fourth quarter of 2018, according to a preliminary report from research house TrendFocus.

The single largest category was 2.5-inch mobile and consumer electronics (CE) drives at 44-45 million shipped, a 13 per cent drop annually from around 51 million the year before. Gaming market shipments, however, declined less than TrendFocus had expected – so gamers appear to be committed to spending on their rigs.

The age of hard drives is over as Samsung cranks out consumer QLC SSDs


The next largest category was 3.5-inch desktop and CE drives, with 27.5 million drives shipped, down 23 per cent year-on-year from around 35.7 million of the prior year's Q4.

Desktops are falling out of favour as notebooks and tablets take over. We assume SSD cannibalisation is also a factor.

The third category was nearline and other high-capacity (3.5-inch) drives at 11 million supplied, down 9.5 per cent on the year from about 10 million.

Finally, 5.5 million mission-critical enterprise drives were shipped, down 4.7 per cent on the year from around 5.8 million.

TrendFocus said Seagate was the quarter champion, pumping out 36.75 million drives, down 8 per cent annually. The research house said rival Western Digital had shipped 30.5 million, down 28 per cent on the year and an 11 per cent quarterly decline from (we calculated) about 34.3 million.

In its quarter ending 28 September 2018, WD reported 34.1 million drives shipped, which roughly agrees with TrendFocus's number.


Who was the storage dollar daddy in 2017? S. S. D.


Ranking the year-on-year sector declines, 3.5-inch desktop and CE drives tanked most, falling 23 per cent. Then came 2.5-inch mobile and CE, declining 13 per cent, followed by nearline and high-capacity drives at 9.5 per cent. Mission-critical enterprise drive shipments shrank the least, 4.7 per cent.

These numbers came to us via Wells Fargo senior analyst Aaron Rakers.

Disk drive shipments are in decline but have a long, long way to fall before whole sectors, such as mission-critical enterprise and 2.5-inch drives generally, conceivably disappear. ®

Other stories you might like

  • Cheers ransomware hits VMware ESXi systems
    Now we can say extortionware has jumped the shark

    Another ransomware strain is targeting VMware ESXi servers, which have been the focus of extortionists and other miscreants in recent months.

    ESXi, a bare-metal hypervisor used by a broad range of organizations throughout the world, has become the target of such ransomware families as LockBit, Hive, and RansomEXX. The ubiquitous use of the technology, and the size of some companies that use it has made it an efficient way for crooks to infect large numbers of virtualized systems and connected devices and equipment, according to researchers with Trend Micro.

    "ESXi is widely used in enterprise settings for server virtualization," Trend Micro noted in a write-up this week. "It is therefore a popular target for ransomware attacks … Compromising ESXi servers has been a scheme used by some notorious cybercriminal groups because it is a means to swiftly spread the ransomware to many devices."

    Continue reading
  • Twitter founder Dorsey beats hasty retweet from the board
    As shareholders sue the social network amid Elon Musk's takeover scramble

    Twitter has officially entered the post-Dorsey age: its founder and two-time CEO's board term expired Wednesday, marking the first time the social media company hasn't had him around in some capacity.

    Jack Dorsey announced his resignation as Twitter chief exec in November 2021, and passed the baton to Parag Agrawal while remaining on the board. Now that board term has ended, and Dorsey has stepped down as expected. Agrawal has taken Dorsey's board seat; Salesforce co-CEO Bret Taylor has assumed the role of Twitter's board chair. 

    In his resignation announcement, Dorsey – who co-founded and is CEO of Block (formerly Square) – said having founders leading the companies they created can be severely limiting for an organization and can serve as a single point of failure. "I believe it's critical a company can stand on its own, free of its founder's influence or direction," Dorsey said. He didn't respond to a request for further comment today. 

    Continue reading
  • Snowflake stock drops as some top customers cut usage
    You might say its valuation is melting away

    IPO darling Snowflake's share price took a beating in an already bearish market for tech stocks after filing weaker than expected financial guidance amid a slowdown in orders from some of its largest customers.

    For its first quarter of fiscal 2023, ended April 30, Snowflake's revenue grew 85 percent year-on-year to $422.4 million. The company made an operating loss of $188.8 million, albeit down from $205.6 million a year ago.

    Although surpassing revenue expectations, the cloud-based data warehousing business saw its valuation tumble 16 percent in extended trading on Wednesday. Its stock price dived from $133 apiece to $117 in after-hours trading, and today is cruising back at $127. That stumble arrived amid a general tech stock sell-off some observers said was overdue.

    Continue reading

Biting the hand that feeds IT © 1998–2022