OCZ Storage Solutions Interview With Alex Mei
To say OCZ has had a tumultuous year in 2013 would be putting it mildly. The company took a brutal beating financially and was knocked down, but not out. Now, thanks to an acquisition by Toshiba, the newly formed and revitalized OCZ Storage Solutions, is poised and ready to make another run at enthusiasts and the enterprise.
In an effort to clear up some of the rumors and hear what Toshiba’s OCZ Storage Solutions Group has in store this year, we reached out to OCZ’s CMO, Alex Mei.
Here’s what he had to say:
HH: How will Toshiba’s acquisition of OCZ affect future product development?
Alex: Now that we are a Toshiba Group Company, one of the most exciting things about OCZ Storage Solutions is that we have been infused with even greater resources to develop next generation products. Toshiba acquired all of the company’s R&D and engineering assets and not only kept them completely intact, but enabled these teams to refocus their efforts on developing our own in-house next generation controller, firmware, and enterprise software. These teams will continue to create products that are specifically designed for our target audience.
HH: How will having direct access to Toshiba’s NAND Flash manufacturing and engineers allow OCZ to better optimize their products?
Alex: Toshiba makes some of the very best NAND in the world and even prior to the acquisition we leveraged the company’s eMLC NAND in a number of our top volume enterprise drives. The earlier and greater access to Toshiba’s next generation NAND is a major plus that lets OCZ optimize our next generation controllers and firmware to take advantage of the complete range of features, and opens the door to further enhance performance and endurance in future client and enterprise drives. This early access can also potentially accelerate the design cycle making it possible to release innovative products with even better time to market.
HH: We’re very familiar with Toshiba as a bulk chip supplier for NAND Flash but is Toshiba committed to extending the OCZ brand and becoming a larger player in consumer and enterprise SSDs?
Alex: Great question, and the answer is absolutely YES. When Toshiba evaluated the company they saw value in both the OCZ brand and our well established global channels. The new company, OCZ Storage Solutions, will not only continue to serve our valued customers in both the consumer and enterprise but further invest in and accelerate our efforts to provide leading edge products and solutions that are designed specifically for both of these distinct markets. We are committed to growing the “OCZ” brand and our SSD offerings in both areas bolstered by the financial stability and support of Toshiba.
The Recently Released OCZ Vertex 460 Features 19nm Toshiba MLC NAND
HH: What does the Toshiba acquisition mean to existing OCZ customers? Will they continue to see firmware updates and newer versions on the OCZ Toolbox to maintain their drives, even if they don’t use Toshiba NAND?
Alex: Toshiba acquired the company’s assets and not the liabilities, but we were very pleased that the new organization is able to continue to support existing customers with current SSD products. This supports the vast majority of consumers and all enterprise customers as our top volume products like the Agility, Vertex, Vector SATA and RevoDrive PCIe SSDs all continue to be supported. We are working hard to make the transition for all our customers as seamless as possible and you can be sure that if new firmware updates or enhances to the Toolbox are made they will be accessible for all the current SSD products.