Fujitsu Limited announced Tuesday that it will cease manufacturing hard disk drive (HDD) heads on March 31, 2009.
The decision comes at a 56 million dollar facilities-related loss to the company, as it already invested into a component manufacturing plant located in Nagano City, Japan. Fujitsu will retain its employees though, and the plant will continue to make other components, such as printed circuit boards for servers.
As for Fujitsu's overall HDD business, the company is in continuing negatiations with several companies over a possible sale. According to Yahoo! Tech News, Toshiba has stated that it is in talks about a possible purchase of Fujitsu's HDD business.
Fujitsu already exited the plasma TV segment back in late 2007, claiming it was due to unsatisfactory returns on its investments. With competition from other HDD manufactures and a poor economy, as well as the looming popularity of solid state drives (SSDs), Fujitsu's choice to also exit the HDD market seems justified. If the economy does not improve and if SSDs continue to gain mainstream popularity, it may be inevitable that other HDD manufactures will be faced with a similar fate.