WD Passes Seagate, Now No. 1 in HHD Shipments

By Chris Preimesberger  |  Posted 2010-06-01 Print this article Print

Western Digital shipped a record 51.1 million HDDs (31.3 percent market share) during the three-month period from January to March 2010, up 3.2 percent from the 49.5 million it sold in Q4 2009, market researcher iSuppli said.

Champagne glasses were undoubtedly clinking June 1 at Western Digital's Lake Forest, Calif. main campus.

Western Digital, which now prefers to be called WD, for the first time moved past perennial market champion Seagate Technology into first place in number of hard drives sold during one quarter, according to market numbers reported June 1 by iSuppli.

WD shipped a record 51.1 million HDDs (31.3 percent market share) during the three-month period from January to March 2010, up 3.2 percent from the 49.5 million it sold in Q4 2009, the market researcher said.

On the other hand, Seagate shipped 50.3 million HDDs in Q1 (30.9 percent market share), up a bit less than 1 percent from the 49.9 million it sold during Q4 '09.

Despite WD's overall higher sales total, Seagate out-earned WD in overall income from HDD sales, pulling down $3.1 billion in Q1 compared with WD's $2.64 billion, iSuppli said.

Seagate's larger revenue total is attributed to its serving the high-end enterprise sector, which brings larger financial returns, said Fang Zhang, analyst for storage systems at iSuppli.

WD: Lower-cost business model

"In comparison, Western Digital employed a lower-cost business model that translated into reduced average selling prices (ASP) and less revenue-but higher unit shipments," Zhang said.

Following WD and Seagate on the iSuppli market number list were Hitachi Global Storage Technologies in third place (28.7 million units shipped, 17.6 percent market share), Toshiba/Fujitsu in fourth (17.5 million units shipped, 10.7 percent market share), and Samsung Electronics Co. Ltd. in fifth  (15.5 million units shipped, 9.5 percent market share).

Hitachi showed the strongest quarter-over-quarter growth among the top 5, up 13.9 percent during the period. Toshiba/Fujitsu and Samsung both registered shipment declines, iSuppli said.

Chris Preimesberger Chris Preimesberger was named Editor-in-Chief of Features & Analysis at eWEEK in November 2011. Previously he served eWEEK as Senior Writer, covering a range of IT sectors that include data center systems, cloud computing, storage, virtualization, green IT, e-discovery and IT governance. His blog, Storage Station, is considered a go-to information source. Chris won a national Folio Award for magazine writing in November 2011 for a cover story on Salesforce.com and CEO-founder Marc Benioff, and he has served as a judge for the SIIA Codie Awards since 2005. In previous IT journalism, Chris was a founding editor of both IT Manager's Journal and DevX.com and was managing editor of Software Development magazine. His diverse resume also includes: sportswriter for the Los Angeles Daily News, covering NCAA and NBA basketball, television critic for the Palo Alto Times Tribune, and Sports Information Director at Stanford University. He has served as a correspondent for The Associated Press, covering Stanford and NCAA tournament basketball, since 1983. He has covered a number of major events, including the 1984 Democratic National Convention, a Presidential press conference at the White House in 1993, the Emmy Awards (three times), two Rose Bowls, the Fiesta Bowl, several NCAA men's and women's basketball tournaments, a Formula One Grand Prix auto race, a heavyweight boxing championship bout (Ali vs. Spinks, 1978), and the 1985 Super Bowl. A 1975 graduate of Pepperdine University in Malibu, Calif., Chris has won more than a dozen regional and national awards for his work. He and his wife, Rebecca, have four children and reside in Redwood City, Calif.Follow on Twitter: editingwhiz

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