The number of top tier hard drive and solid state disk makers shrinks by one today, with the announcement that Western Digital is acquiring Hitachi Global Storage Technologies. The deal is worth about $4.3 billion, and it gives Hitachi Storage’s parent company (Hitachi Ltd) a share in Western Digital and two seats on the company’s boards.
What does this mean for users? It’s really too early to say. But hopefully the combined forces of these two companies will mean higher performance, higher capacity storage technologies. Of course, it could also lead to a rise in prices since there’s now a little less competition… but I doubt that will happen since there are still a number of companies pumping out high performance or budget hard drives and SSDs including Seagate, Toshiba, OCZ, and Kingston.