In a conference call regarding the results of its first quarter in fiscal 2013, Micron Technology said that there is a growing demand for solid-state drives (SSDs) despite declining numbers in the PC sector. The company said it has seen a 20-percent rise in SSD orders during 1QF13 alone.
"We continue to be pleased with our solid-state drive business, as these shipments were up about 20-percent quarter-on-quarter," said Mark Adams, the president of Micron. "In Q1, SSDs represented 17-percent of our trade NAND business. If you include NAND component sales to SSD providers, about 35-percent of our trade NAND bits go into solid state drives."
Adams said the company is on track to introduce new "breeds" of SSDs – including solutions for the enterprise sector – in the coming months. The enterprise-based P400E SSD is expected to ship in the first calendar quarter of 2013, and Micron is close to qualifying a next-generation Serial ATA enterprise-class drive with a major server and storage OEM.
"Our development of Enterprise-class SSDs is progressing well," Adams said. "Our SLC-based PCIe P320 H enterprise high-performance storage drive continues to receive positive reviews from both the press and our top customers."
Micron is reportedly one of many manufacturers who are seeing an increased demand for SSDs despite their price. One reason for the increase is possibly be due to the release of Windows 8 which may have pushed consumers into upgrading from the traditional HDD for better performance. Form factors like Ultrabooks and the Windows 8 spinoff hybrids are also pushing manufacturers to stick with SSDs due to their size and speed. The falling prices of SSDs are also likely increasing sales.
Micron said on Wednesday that revenues from sales of NAND Flash products were 4-percent lower in the first quarter of fiscal 2013 compared to the fourth quarter of fiscal 2012. This was due to a 9-percent decrease in sales volume, partially offset by a 5-percent increase in average selling prices. Trade NAND Flash sales volume in the first quarter of fiscal 2013 decreased compared to the fourth quarter of fiscal 2012 primarily as a result of lower production of NAND Flash products, the company said.
"Revenues from sales of DRAM products in the first quarter of fiscal 2013 were 9-percent lower compared to the fourth quarter of fiscal 2012 primarily due to an 11-percent decrease in average selling prices," Micron stated. "Sales of NOR Flash products were relatively unchanged for the first quarter of fiscal 2013 compared to the fourth quarter of fiscal 2012."
Micron said it saw a net loss of $275 million in the first quarter of fiscal 2013 which ended on November 29, 2012. The company saw a net loss of $245 million in the prior quarter, and a net loss of $187 million in the first quarter of fiscal 2012 (November 2011).
Hard drive vendors shot themselves in the foot by becoming more unreliable than any other time in recent memory.
All we are waiting for is for the average value vendor to start offering SSDs in place of standard HDDs on the low end sub $500 systems for SSD domination to truly begin...
And not those crappy SSDs from old Netbooks either...
Lower prices on a semi-luxurious commodity leads to higher demand!
My 3 year old intel 128gb ssd is offended by your comment and challenges you to another use of 3 years. /pew pew
What makes things interesting is that this is the first upgrade users can make in a very long time that genuinely extends the life of their computer, and offers HUGE noticeable performance gains that can be appreciated for everyone, while the cost to convert is relatively low.
SSDs are the #1 reason for a lack of new PC sales. You can buy a whole new computer (without an SSD) for $5-700... or for $1-300 you can have an SSD installed in your current system and have everything transferred over, and have a system that feels like a new machine. That is some pretty simple math, and if PC makers want to move machines then they are simply going to have to make SSDs a standard feature, or at least a hybrid drive if space is a concern.
That's not what he meant. He meant the very first SSDs like in Asus EeePC 700/900 series that still work but get their ass kicked speed-wise even by modern HDDs.
Having said that, the RT tablets are not doing well, as expected for a device with almost no applications to run on.
First, tablets. With a decent sized screen, many are using these for basic web browsing, tweeting, online shopping etc. Thus, less need for a 2nd PC or Laptop.
Secondly, Tell me your "old" dual core machine with 2-4gb RAM isn't fast enough to do the same basic tasks that make up 90% of what people use computers for. (You average user has no clue what photoshop rendering speed, zip compression, video encoding fps etc. are, and they probably use a console for gaming.)
So we get down to the SSD upgrade and OS reload scenario. Most people don't know what the heck us geeks are talking about when we start spouting that off. And, I don't see comercials for the geek squad touting the need to upgrade to an SSD. (They'de rather sell you an iDevice anyhow) So it is hard for me to except this as #1 reason for lack up pc sales. But - I do agree with you, for those in the know this is the way to go.
My own analysis of why pc sales are stagnating has more to do with software than ssd sales. The world has taken a step back by 10 years on the software front due to the limited hardware capabilites of mobile devices. Traditionally, we have seen the need to upgrade every 2-3 years due to advances in software needs. But the market has stagnated with dual-quad core. We need to see some killer app that is power hungry and needs to be fed more cores to see a surge in pc sales. The problem with that, is the heavy lifiting is now done in the datacenter with most apps these days. So who knows when we'll see the need for more power in the desktop.
As far as SSD goes, I can see these replacing spinning disks soon for basically the same reason as I stated for CPU power. Everything can be stored and shared via a datacenter, so there is less need to have a ton of GB locally. (Unless you care about privacy, and security of course).