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Disk drive market on the up

But don't expect prices to follow suit

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Shipments of Winchester diskdrives worldwide are on the up, and are set to continue in this direction for the next year. But according to new research from IDC, this will not necessarily translate into higher revenues, as the highly competitive market will keep a lid on prices. "Shipment growth will largely be the result of steady demand for various system categories, especially PCs and PC servers. Unfortunately, overcapacity in desktop and mobile drive segments, coupled with intense competitive pressures, will put continued pressure on drive revenue growth," said Danielle Levitas, research manager at IDC. Last year, shipments rose 11 per cent to 143.6 million units, and this year growth is expected to be even stronger. IDC is expecting a jump of about 15 per cent to 166 million units by the end of the year. Entry servers and hard disk drives will both do well over the next three years, but the traditional workstation is going to be left by the wayside with its shipments falling at six per cent a year until 2003. Seagate is still the major market player having 21 per cent of the market, despite a two per cent decline in shipments. Quantum was second with 17.6 per cent. Both Maxtor and Hitachi increased their shipments by about 100 per cent in 1998. ®

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