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Seagate Technology Public Limited Company Message Board

  • orcleman orcleman Oct 29, 2008 1:25 PM Flag

    Will SSD kill mainstream HDD ?

    Admittedly, I don't know much about these technologies, but I found this note by CSFB this morning interesting and was wondering is this s what's pressuring STX.


    • INTC held a conference call on 28th October to discuss its SSD offerings. As SSDs continue to evolve, we believe they
    represent an important application for NAND and have analyzed the market opportunity for SSDs to estimate the potential
    contribution to NAND bit consumption.
    • INTC Outlines SSD Advantages. INTC discussed in detail the performance advantages offered by its SSD products over
    mainstream HDDs as well as competitors' SSDs. The data suggests INTC's SSDs achieve higher read or write performance,
    lower power consumption per input-output operation and native 3Gbps SATA interface. INTC's internally designed SSD
    controller is combined with tailored NAND components for improved speed and durability.
    • Expect SSDs to be a Key Application for NAND. As SSDs enter into volume production, we expect to see three major areas of
    deployment, including (1) netbooks, (2) notebooks, and (3) servers. We estimate each of these applications to consume
    approximately 3% of NAND bit supply by 2H09 and our base case forecast implies 8.5% of NAND bit supply consumed by
    SSDs in 2009. We note that the true impact of server SSDs on the NAND market is often underestimated because (1) actual
    drive capacities are higher than marketed capacities, to compensate for bits that may fail, and (2) server SSDs use SLC
    NAND, which requires more die area per bit than MLC NAND, resulting in approximately 1.8 MLC bits foregone for each SLC
    bit produced. We believe the incremental bit demand from SSDs in 2009 could have a noticeable impact on stabilization of
    supply and demand in NAND.
    • Upside Potential from Higher Adoption and Drive Capacities. Our estimates of NAND bit consumption are highly sensitive of
    our assumptions for adoption or attach rates for SSD drives as well as average capacities. For example, we assume only
    2.1% of performance optimized enterprise HDD shipments in 2009 will be replaced by SSDs. At 5% substitution and 33%
    higher average SSD capacity, we estimate bit demand to nearly triple from 2.5% of total NAND bit supply to 7.3%. For
    notebooks, we assume modest SSD penetration at 2.0%-2.5% in 2009 at 77GB average capacity. At 4.0% penetration and
    88GB average capacity, NAND bit consumption is twice higher, at 6.0% of total NAND supply. For netbooks, NAND
    consumption in 2009 can be twice higher than our base case estimate of 3.0% if penetration is 50% vs. 40% and average
    capacity is 28GB vs. 20GB.

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    • This is a great thread, and there are clearly some very informed and expert people on this board when it comes to these technologies.

      Couple of questions:

      1. What is Seagate's stance on SSD's? Is their strategy to combine the best of both? Are they doing extensive research into SSD?

      2. What technologies do the folks that own Seagate expect the company to ship over the next 1-2 years that will differentiate the company from Western Digital and other HDD vendors?

      Keep up the debate!

      • 1 Reply to wantstoretireearly
      • STX is developing SSDs to be used in certain limited, server applications that feature data-on-demand, first STX-SSD product expected to ship this year.

        Please note a number of posters who pump SSDs on this board are short or work in the flash industry which was bleeding red ink long before the economy turned down. Their best hope is that some product offers an opportunity to employ all the excess flash manufacturing capacity.

        Also, according to GRATZ's post a projected 4% penetration of SSDs into laptop PCs is really
        P-E-A-N-U-T-S, when you consider laptop sales have been growing 20-25% annually.

        IMHO, the most impressive thing about SSDs is the amount of hype put out by its proponents!

    • I am long on STX for many years, but I think that introduction of Intel SSD answered your question. Yes, SSD can and will be better than the hard drive. It looks like they have a great chance to replace hard drives in many applications.

      Hard drive industry had its chance to fight back with the hybrid drive, but that failed.

      The only question is when SSDs will replace 50% of hard drives.
      When they have a 100Gb nicely performing SSD for about $50 -- it will be pretty sweet choice for laptop hard drives, if this happens in about two years. If this happens in five years, then 100Gb might not be enough and all those 1Tb laptop spinning disk drives will still come out on top.

      The major thing that I am afraid of, as an STX shareholder, is when Intel starts integrating flash on their chipsets. It's only matter of time until SSD comes native on your motherboard.

      All the drawbacks of SSD that other guys listed seem to be solved by Intel SSD technology. The only hurdle now is the price.

      If STX can maintain current levels of shippings for another five years -- then we are fine, but I am now not certain then will be able to. We'll see in 2010.

      • 3 Replies to SA1212
      • "The only question is when SSDs will replace 50% of hard drives.When they have a 100Gb nicely performing SSD for about $50 -- it will be pretty sweet choice for laptop hard drives, if this happens in about two years. If this happens in five years, then 100Gb might not be enough and all those 1Tb laptop spinning disk drives will still come out on top."

        Currently a 120 GB, 2.5" SSD sells for $500 to $600, compared to $60 for the equivalent HDD. It is highly unlikely that a 120 GB SSD will sell for $50 in two years, try $150 if prices fall at a 50% annual rate. FYI, the ability of flash manufacturers to continue to drop pricing at a 50% annual rate of is now being called into question due the losses piled up by the flash manufacturers and current economic environment.

        The other thing that the flash phobes continue to ignore is that the capacity of laptop drives continue to grow at a 30% annual rate, indicating that the average capacity of a laptop drive wiil be in 250-320 GB range in three years. So even if SSD manufacturers can continue to drop pricing by 50% over the next three years, the SSD manufacturers will be offering a drive with less than half the storage capacity of the standard HDD laptop for a 50% higher price!

        Think about it!

      • By the time SSD achieves 100G, HDD will be up in the mega teribyte levels.

      • "All the drawbacks of SSD that other guys listed seem to be solved by Intel SSD technology. The only hurdle now is the price."

        THE ONLY HURDLE IS PRICE

        How can you be so naive as to write something so stupid? Price is the only hurdle to EVERYTHING in life. You imply it is a minor hurdle. It is the most major of all hurdles. Solid State has been and will ALWAYS be more expensive than hard drives.

        Cheers.

    • The answer to this is no. SSD's can only write each physical location a limited number of times. As a result each the drives algorithms will attempt to not write any single location too many times but the problem is just physics. SSD's will take over micro drives and some laptop applications but at some point will stabilize out in the low end.

      Dont expect to save all those mp3's or videos on flash for a long time.... or google or yahoo to swicth over to flash drives :).

    • why downrate this message? seems to be good info

      • 1 Reply to kev1ntx
      • Why downrate it? Good info?

        Crap - we have heard this SAME BS for 4 years running. Good info? Yes - READ WHAT was said then ask yourself why are they asking if it will kill HDD.

        Here, let me excerpt from what was posted:

        "As SSDs continue to evolve, we believe they represent an important application for NAND and have analyzed the market opportunity for SSDs to estimate the potential contribution to NAND bit consumption.

        We believe the incremental bit demand from SSDs in 2009 could have a noticeable impact on stabilization of supply and demand in NAND."

        Do you understand what they are saying here? The important issue has nothing to do with HDDs. The important issue is: Jeez - we need something to consume flash bits so we can soak up all the excess flash capacity!!!!! The introduction of SSDs is WAY MORE IMPORTANT to the flash industry to consume flash capacity than it is a threat to the HDD industry.

        Now, pay real close attention to this part:

        "For example, we assume only 2.1% of performance optimized enterprise HDD shipments in 2009 will be replaced by SSDs. At 5% substitution and 33% higher average SSD capacity, we estimate bit demand to nearly triple from 2.5% of total NAND bit supply to 7.3%. For notebooks, we assume modest SSD penetration at 2.0%-2.5% in 2009 at 77GB average capacity. At 4.0% penetration and
        88GB average capacity, NAND bit consumption is twice higher, at 6.0% of total NAND supply. For netbooks, NAND consumption in 2009 can be twice higher than our base case estimate of 3.0% if penetration is 50% vs. 40% and average capacity is 28GB vs. 20GB."

        Did you get that? Adoption rates under 5% of a market growing at 25%? Does that sound like HDDs are being threatened? And what if adoption rates get to 10%? Guess what? Buy flash stocks, because there won't be enough flash capacity to get that high!

        So how does this threaten HDDs?

        As I've said numerous times - anybody using SSDs as the reason to downgrade HDDs either: 1) knows nothing, or 2) simply wants to trash HDD stocks.

        It's all a canard!

 
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