Are SSD Prices About To Plummet? What You Need To Know Before Buying
Pricing on solid state drive (SSD) storage is on track to undergo a "noticeable and cyclical downward correction" very soon, according to a couple of analysts at TrendForce, a market research firm. In a new report, analysts Ben Yeh and Bryan Ao point to an oversupply and other reasons why SSDs are about to become cheaper.
Furthermore, the predicted price correction will apply to both enterprise and client SSD models, the analysts say. If their pulse of the NAND flash memory and storage market is correct, SSDs prices will drop anywhere from 10-15 percent in the first quarter of 2022. That means you could be get more bang (or capacity) for your buck in a month or so. This is encouraging, as earlier this year it was predicted that SSD prices could actually go up instead of down.
One of the reasons stated in the report is that major smartphone brands are winding down their procurement activities for the holiday season. In doing so, the market for NAND flash chips is expected to remain in a state of oversupply.
The analysts also note that NAND chip suppliers have begun transitioning their output to higher-layer technologies, resulting in "supply growth that noticeably outpaces demand." That said, other components, such as controller ICs, are in tight supply so the upcoming price adjustment for SSDs won't be quite as severe as previously expected, at least in the short term. Looking longer term, it's another story.
"Moving ahead to 2022, however, the supply of relevant components is expected to gradually improve, so the market for various NAND flash products will also likely shift towards a noticeable oversupply. As a result, prices of NAND flash products will steadily decline before the arrival of the peak season in 3Q22," the analysts note in their SSD report.
Looking ahead to next quarter, client SSDs specifically—consumer models that end up in your desktop PC and laptop—are expected to drop by as much as 10 percent. In addition, the average storage capacity is predicted to increase to 567GB in 2022. If true, we should see fewer laptops and pre-built desktops shipping with 256GB SSDs.
We'll have to wait and see how the market actually unfolds. As things stand, SSDs are often on sale, especially at the end of the year when the holiday shopping seasons gets underway. For example, here are some SSD deals available right now...
- 1TB WD Black SN850 (PCIe 4.0): $164.99 (save $65)
- 1TB Samsung 980 (PCIe 3.0): $109.99 (save $30)
- 1TB WD Black SN750 (PCIe 4.0): $109.99 (save $20)
- 1TB SK Hynix Gold S31 (SATA): $94.98 (save $40.01)
- 1TB WD Blue SN570 (PCIe 3.0): $89.99 (save $20)
Depending on what kind of speed and interface you're after, a 1TB SSD can be had for less than $100. Mechanical hard disk drives (HDDs) still offer the best price per gigabyte in terms of sheer storage capacity, but as far as SSDs go, the overall bang-for-buck factor is pretty good, up to a certain point.