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Declining PC Sales Not Derailing SSD Market in 2012

As we reported earlier, IHS iSuppli forecast the PC market to have a 1.2 percent decline in 2012, which will be the first decline in 11 years. With the diversified of SSDs, its growth outlook has only decreased slightly, even with the ultrabook shipments being behind expectations and the sobering outlooks provided by Intel and AMD. 

SSD shipments in the first half of this year amounted to 12.9 million units, according to IHS iSuppli. Shipments reached 10.5 million in the third quarter and will rise to 17.5 million units in the fourth quarter, for a total of 28.0 million units in the second half. This is down from the previous forecast of 13.0 million in the third quarter and 20.0 million in the fourth. Even though the units shipped didn't meet expectations, it is still double the total number shipped during the first half of the year. 

The shipment date provided by IHS cover pure standalone SSDs as well as drives that are used with HDDs as separate cache entities. The numbers cover all applications for SSDs, including but not limited to the enterprise segment, ultrabooks and consumer units.

The long-term outlook of SSDs still holds a positive position due to improvements like NAND die shrinks, increasing utilization of TLC flash, and more efficient controllers that are accelerating the cost curve. Information collected by ISH showed the second quarter of the year closed with 7.1 million SSDs being shipped for $1.5 billion in revenue. In addition, IHS predicts that by the second half of this decade, SSDs with be the standard storage in non-budget notebook and desktop PCs, thanks to a mixture of lower prices, consumer education and an optimized software ecosystem.

IHS projects the SSD industry will finish 2012 with $7.5 billion in revenue and 41.0 million in shipments, with compound annual growth rates of 35 percent in revenue and 69 percent in shipments.

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