The End of HDD? Seagate Shut Down Its Suzhou Factory

2017-01-16 09:19 Posted by: Judy in News Go to Comment

Hard-disk maker Seagate Technology Plc has just announced its decision to shut down its Suzhou disk drive manufacturing plant in China in January 10th, 2017, and dismiss over 2000 relevant employees there. As a response to its earlier restructuring plans launched in July 2016, the latest job cuts seem to be no accident but a part of reducing its global manufacturing footprint. 

It is understood that Seagate Technology Plc is one of the three major players in global HDD market, alongside Japan’s Toshiba and Western Digital. Western Digital so far this year leads the market share at 42%, followed by Seagate at 37% and Toshiba at 21%.

However, as with the rapid growth of SSD shipments, HDD market is facing with sharp declining demand and overcapacity. According to the latest statistics released, the number of HDD shipment has been declining for several years since the peak of 653.6 million units in 2010. Though the total HDD shipments in CQ3 2016 saw a significant increase, it failed to stop the extended downturn of the worldwide HDD market.

On the contrary to that, the demand for the storage component SSD (also known as solid state drive) is growing rapidly, which seems really incredible if taking the shrinking PC market into consideration. From the below table, it’s not hard to find that the shipments of SSDs Q1 2016 were up 32% from a year earlier, from 23.190 growth to 30.777 million units.

What makes this situation happen should partly contribute to the inherent drawbacks of HDD, however. Technically, the traditional mechanical hard disk drive is prone to fragmentation of data as a result of its rotary recording surface, therefore requiring longer time in the process of reading and writing compared to the fragmentation-free solid state drive. Another drawback of HDD is the higher power consumption so as to have the metallic platter rotated and have the magnetic read head moved. Differently, SSD can access any position of the driver accurately and quickly based on flash memory chip instead of mechanical components. But what sets SSD apart from HDD are not only the excellent random access speed but also the outstanding multitasking capability, prominent reliability as well as durability.

Affordable pricing and high storage capacity once were the most competitive advantages of HDD, but they’re not so powerful any more as the development of SSD technology. The mainstream capacity of SSD has grown from 32GB to 128/256GB, the maximum capacity can even reach 10TB nowadays. Meanwhile, the price of SSD is falling all the way, making it more affordable for the generic public. As you can see in the web hosting industry, that the vast majority of hosting companies are switching to SSD storage. It is predicated that HDD will be entirely replaced by SSD in the very near future.

In the face of changes in the trend of the environment, Seagate, Western Data and other main traditional HDD manufacturers has no choice but to embrace SSD technology. In 2015, Western Data has announced to acquire SanDisk, one of the largest flash chip maker in the world, becoming the second traditional HDD manufacturer having flash resources. Seagate in 2014 also announced its acquisition of ASD and FCD assets for $450 million in cash, but the consumer SSD product line has been early shut down without saying the company lacks of flash production line. The end result is: Seagate obtains very little market share especially in the field of consumer SSD.

All these have led to Seagate’s taking layoffs and closing factories on a global scale. And it becomes even more difficult for the company at present to come back to mainstream market of data storage device because many countries like China are beginning to actively promote the domestic storage industry. Maybe the only one possible way available for Seagate alike traditional HDD manufacturers is cooperating with local storage manufacturers. 

Tagged with:

Related Articles

Things Beneath Red Hat’s and Oracle’s Earnings Reports
06/27
Red Hat and Oracle published their quarterly earnings reports which showed exciting results than previous expectation, so there must be lots of smiles in Redwood Shores and Raleigh this week. The good news also inspired their stock values that Red Hat’s increased by 10.6% in the early trading after the good news gave out, and Oracle got a 9% rise.
What Shippable’s Continuous Delivery Mean For MSPS?
06/26
The most challenging stage is the software release stage for developers. This process is repeated every single time you want to update your product, and it leads to slower releases which add no value to customers.
WMT vs. Amazon, S.F. Express vs. CaiNiao: Cloud Data Storage is Particularly Important
06/23
It is very clear that cloud data storage is the key reason that WMT requires the technology companies it is partnering in some business. Actually, there was a similar event happening in China, which was between S.F. Express and CaiNiao, because of the customer data interfaces. The exposed the fight between Alibaba Cloud and Tencent Cloud in the cloud data storage area.
Study Conducted in Digital Reality: Direct Connections to Cloud Bring 50X Less Latency
06/23
For enterprises that are considering making public cloud as a part of their data center solution, latency is one of the major problems they could face. For others who have already jumped in and started using public cloud the cost incurred becomes a problem. Others are able to predict this problem ahead and use public clouds in circumstances where latency will not pose a problem to them.
Microsoft Supports Newly Launched AMD EPYC 7000 Datacenter Processors
06/22
AMD newly launched advanced chips, the AMD Epyc 7000 series, which is for datacenter, and the chip giant hopes to use it to receive a comeback in servers. Microsoft decided to use this datacenter processor to support its Windows Azure platforms and its Windows Servers.
Comment
Be the first to comment!
About the author
Judy
Views: 20574
Articles: 106
Having been an website editor for web hosting, SSL, SEO, cloud and domain registration for years. Well knowledgeable about online presence creation, optimization and security.

Author's Hot Articles

godaddy
hub

Hot Posts

Service Recommendation

Cloud Hosting
Cloud hosting is the fastest growing hosting solutions in the industry. »
Cloud Storage
Best Cloud Storage are named based on customer and expert reviews. »
SSL
The most popular SSL certificate providers in the industry are here. »
China Web Hosting
Find out a comprehensive evaluation to the host service provider in China. »
bluehost
Chat Advertising cooperation TOP