Don't Expect Pre-Flood HDD Pricing Until 2013, Western Digital Says

There's no denying that solid state drives (SSDs) are the sexy storage option, offering the luxury of blazing fast read and write transfers along with the reliability that comes from having no moving parts. But they're also comparatively expensive to mechanical hard drives, and typically smaller in capacity, too. So where does that leave HDDs?

For many, it's still the primary storage option, while even SSD adopters view them as viable secondary storage devices. In other words, HDDs still have their place, and unfortunately, it doesn't appear that today's still-inflated prices will fall to pre-flood levels before next year.

Western Digital Hard Drive

That's the word from Western Digital, which says that lingering bills related to the devastating floods in Thailand last year means that HDDs will still carry a small premium throughout the rest of 2012 and into 2013.

"There are a lot of added costs right now. WD spent a lot of money on capital damage, running factories that still paid people and mitigating risks of [future] floods," said Ian Keen, WD's UK and Ireland senior sales director.

Are floods really to blame? According to IHS iSuppli, WD and Seagate combine to serve 85 percent of the HDD market, so they obviously have a vested interest in HDD pricing. With that in mind, IHS iSuppli believes we'll be paying inflated prices for HDDs well into 2014.