Print 18 comment(s) - last by SuperSix.. on Oct 26 at 12:00 PM

The battle against flooding in Thailand continues  (Source: Reuters)
Thailand continues to suffer from major flooding, which is having a major impact on the PC industry

PC sales are under continued pressure from a hard drive shortage caused by major flooding in Thailand, with one-fourth of the world's HDDs originating from the flood-ravaged nation.

The floods have shutdown more than 14,000 factories and forced at least 660,000 people out of work -- and has also severely damaged an already fragile global PC industry.  Thailand remains the No. 2 maker of HDDs commonly used in PCs, notebooks and servers -- with hard drive manufacturers already suffering from lower demand for PCs and peripherals.  

Both Western Digital and Seagate have warned of shortages because of supply issues, while Apple and other computer makers also confirm storage problems.

Earlier in the month, WD confirmed it was going to extend the suspension of Thai facility operations, due to manufacturing facilities being flooded.  Even with manufacturing facilities still functional in the United States, Singapore and Malaysia, flooding "will have significant impact on the company's overall operations and its ability to meet customer demand" for the rest of 2011.

Even worse for WD, CEO John Coyne predicts a 60% quarter revenue decline from the same period last year, as the company looks to rebound as fast as possible.

Seagate's Thai production has not been hit as hard, but the US hard drive maker is expected to have a difficult time finding parts for its products.

Some companies are trying to shift manufacturing from Thailand to other facilities, and all of them must rebuild and assist their employees.  Seyyon Semiconductor expects it to take at least one year for the Thai tech industry to fully recover, with the industry to remain volatile.

The Thai government has confirmed their efforts at draining floodwater has been more successful, while Bangkok Governor Sukhumbhand Paribatra warned residents to be prepared for increased flooding.

Source: CRN

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Newegg should burn
By thisisaname on 10/24/2011 4:35:49 PM , Rating: 2
As has been reported at another forum, this only affects Western Digital hard drives, since they are made in Thailand, yet, Newegg and other retailers are claiming there is a "global shortage" of hdds and have raised the prices on ALL of them. It's disgusting that they are just taking advantage of the situation.
There is NO shortage of hard drives! Therer are plenty of Seagates, Samsungs, Toshibas, Hitachis, Fujitsus, et al.

RE: Newegg should burn
By SuperSix on 10/24/2011 5:26:42 PM , Rating: 5
You are completely wrong, and should do a bit of research before making such statements instead of parroting things you don't know about and just read on other forums.

While Seagate, et al do indeed assemble their drives in China, Malaysia, etc - many of the PARTS needed for said drives are manufactured in Thailand, and those plants are flooded. The best example is Nidec spindle motors - which are used in 75%+ of HDD, their plant is flooded, and it will be months before they will be back in full production. The company that makes the slider mechanisms - down and out. And many other component manufacturers.

And - if WD can't ship any drives, what does that cause to the supply of the other manufacturers - It will also out them in severe shortage. It's called supply and demand. I can tell you with confidence that there's very little of ANY manufacturer available.

Am I saying there's NO price gouging or hoarding? No, but this is the way a free market operates.

RE: Newegg should burn
By thisisaname on 10/24/11, Rating: 0
RE: Newegg should burn
By SuperSix on 10/24/2011 5:55:35 PM , Rating: 4
I am an account executive at the distribution company that Newegg, Amazon, Mwave,etc BUY their hard drives from. I have been here for 10 years. I have friends that I have discussed this with that work at the other major distributors, and there is no excess stock, It's not some big conspiracy to raise prices. You can't assemble product if you don't have the parts, regardless of the geographical location of your plants. There ARE major shortages, I see the stock levels.

You are a fool, and don't understand basic economics, and the industry in general. You don't sell on what you pay for things, you sell based on replacement cost.

RE: Newegg should burn
By thisisaname on 10/24/11, Rating: 0
This explains things
By FITCamaro on 10/24/2011 7:57:43 AM , Rating: 2
Such as why I can only buy one of a certain type of hard drive on newegg. And why prices are higher.

Guess I'll wait until things calm down a little before I look at building my HTPC.

RE: This explains things
By Mitch101 on 10/24/2011 9:21:05 AM , Rating: 2
I just cleaned out a bunch of data but Im hoping I can hold out for the high sodium drives.

RE: This explains things
By MrTeal on 10/24/2011 12:00:02 PM , Rating: 2
They just announced the results of lab experiments showing the effectiveness of using salt to increase storage density, and you're already thinking about waiting for a shipping product? Those won't be on the market for 5 years or more, if they ever see the light of day.

RE: This explains things
By Mitch101 on 10/24/2011 4:21:14 PM , Rating: 2
It should be relatively fast. Chemical grade table salt was added to the developer solution on an existing process to make cleaner nano structures. Basically it is poor nano structuring in the existing process that is the current barrier.

RE: This explains things
By Motoman on 10/24/2011 10:00:06 AM , Rating: 1
I was at Micro Center the other day and saw a sign to that I know why.

RE: This explains things
By Omega215D on 10/24/2011 11:48:25 AM , Rating: 1
Yeah, I was there 3 days ago, saw a sign saying only 1 hard driver per household or something along those lines and asked about it. The guy stated that there was a flood at the manufacturing plants, which at the time, was news to me as none of the tech outlets mentioned it until today.

It's a good to know stores with knowledgeable sales reps still exist.

RE: This explains things
By Omega215D on 10/25/2011 6:46:14 PM , Rating: 1
WTF? is some piece of crap best buy employee or fry's fanboy lurking like an asshole?

RE: This explains things
By michael67 on 10/25/2011 6:31:33 AM , Rating: 2
Why would you wane put a HDD in your HTPC, if you can buy a 60GB SSD for $70, and have your HTPC reacting fast, but above all being silent!

I use my old 30GB Vertex 1 in my HTPC its all the storage i need, for all other storage i use the server, as Gbit network is almost as fast as the HDD the data is standing on.

And use a cheap Windows Home Server for storage

Xigmatek ASGARD II Black $29.99
CORSAIR Builder Series CX430 $44.99
G.SKILL Ripjaws Series 8GB (2 x 4GB) $34.99
ASRock H61M/U3S3 LGA 1155 Intel H61 HDMI SATA 6Gb/s USB 3.0 Micro ATX $69.99
Intel Celeron G530 Sandy Bridge 2.4GHz $56.99
Subtotal: $236.95

This is ex HDDs or a raid controller, if one feels the need for one, as replacement for Drive Extender that has been dropped.
Intresting controller: HighPoint RocketRAID 2720SGL 8x SAS Now: $139.99
Supports: Online Capacity Expansion & Online RAID Level Migration!

Note about CPU power consumption: you can basically use any SB CPU as they all use withing 5W the same idle/download power drain, but you can with a i7 2600K easily do video (re)encoding, and leave you gaming rig free to do gaming when ever you want.

By 3DoubleD on 10/24/2011 1:27:53 PM , Rating: 1
Since this incident has pushed HDD prices up some 30 or 40%, I wonder if we will see greater adoption of SSDs by the likes of Dell, HP, Apple, ect.? I've read the impact of the flooding could last for 5 - 6 months.

This could become the cause of the biggest improvement in mainstream PCs/laptops in a long time.

By b534202 on 10/24/2011 1:33:49 PM , Rating: 2
Yep. Excellent time for SSD to grab market share.

By FITCamaro on 10/24/2011 1:46:36 PM , Rating: 2
It's still $180 for a cheaper 120GB SSD vs. $130-180 for a 2TB hard drive. So really not even getting close in a cost per GB perspective.

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