hddThere’ve been a number of reports over the last few days about how the percentage of netbooks using solid state disks instead of hard drives is expected to fall in 2009. SSDs may be more durable and, in some cases, faster than hard drives. But they’re also much more expensive, which means most netbooks with SSDs have 16GB or less of storage capacity, while hard drive based mini-laptops typically have from 40GB to 160GB of space.

Now DigiTimes is reporting that hard drive makers including Seagate, Western Digital, and Hitachi are working on technology to make 2.5 inch hard drives even cheaper. Today the hard drive is typically one of the most expensive components of a netbook, with computer makers paying as much as $45 for a hard drive. By reducing the cost of platters, heads, and other components, the hard drive manufacturers are hoping to bring the costs down by 40% or more starting in late 2009.

If this turns out to be true, it means that we will probably see more hard drive-based netbooks in 2009. It also means that we might be able to expect a small drop in the prices of netbooks during the second half of 2009. Or a jump in profit margins for netbook retailers anyway.

Of course, flash memory prices are continuing to fall as well and eventually it’s possible that we could see solid state disks replace hard drives altogether in low end machines like netbooks as well as high end computers. After all, it wasn’t that long ago when you could only find SD or CF cards measured in megabytes. Now you can pick up an 8GB memory card for your camera for under $20.

via Fudzilla

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3 replies on “Netbooks driving a push for cheaper 2.5 inch hard drives”

  1. SSDs will win, but first the price has to come down and the storage needs to be increased substantially. I’d have bought a Netbook with a SSD if it was available and if there was any way to have one that was big enough. The biggest I have seen for netbooks is half of what you would like to see at for more then most would be willing to pay.

    What we need is 60 GB, 80 GB, and 100 GB SSD drives offered at a decent price. Capacity will rise and prices will come down theoretically, but honestly the industry is caught in a catch-22. There is no sane way to sell them for much less or so the manufactures say, but the companies will sell less and less as they become less popular in consumers minds. People want them now, but as they stop being offered people will think about them less as an option. The less that are sold means the less that will need to be produced and that means the price stay higher longer. If the manufactures can drop the price they should, if they can’t it will be a long road before they become ubiquitous.

  2. SSDs will win in the end, but their market share will get very small before it starts to climb again. SSDs will totally replace HDs just in time for some new technology to start nipping at the heels of SSDs.

  3. SSDs are the way to go, less moving parts, less noises, more battery life, sometimes higher read and/or write speeds and less vulnerable to impacts. Althrough their high prices are its main disadvantages, their prices are coming down the hill.

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