EMC Drive Prices Continue to Increase

As Netapp and EMC drive prices are on the rise, Western Digital has reported that the number of hard disk drives (HDD) shipped decreased 51% last quarter when compared to the same quarter in 2010.

Western Digital’s fiscal results, released January 24th, emphasized the major impact of the Thailand flooding on hard drive production, shipments, and drive price.

Shortages Increase Drive Price By 50%

Enterprise hard drive shipments suffered due to the destructive Thai flooding. Western Digital shipped 27% fewer enterprise hard drives in the December quarter than they did before the flooding began.

Vendors have cited the shortage in drives for the NetApp and EMC drive price increases, which have risen 5% to 15% higher than normal.

HDD shipments from Western Digital totaled 52.2 million in the fourth quarter of 2010, but shipments only reached 28.5 million in the same quarter of 2011.

Progress Significantly Ahead of Expectations

Western Digital expected to return to pre-flood production levels in September 2012, almost 1 year after the flooding began in October 2011. As a result of component shortages, however, Western Digital expects that the industry pipeline will not return to normal supply levels until the first half of 2013.

Seagate, which supplies the hardware for EMC drives, NetApp hard drives, and a variety of other storage vendors, also expects the hard disk drive shortages to continue. Seagate predicts that hard drive shortages will reach about 150 million units during 2012.

Western Digital President and CEO, John Coyne, says that he expects hard drive prices to stabilize as supply returns to normal levels in the first half of 2013.

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