Don't hold your breath waiting for hard drive prices to stabilize, not unless your lungs are large enough to sustain you for up to 12 months. It's been several months since flooding in Thailand left hard drive manufacturing equipment submerged in water, and as we kick off 2012, Hitachi warns the global hard drive industry won't completely recover until the end of 2012.
Hitachi's prediction comes from company Vice President Brendan Collins, who said that aggressive efforts to restore its operations in Thailand after the floods should result in full restoration by the end of February, DigiTimes reports . Unfortunately, there's still a storage of upstream components that are needed to build hard drives, so Hitachi is likely to run out of inventory by the end of the first quarter.
There was also a recent strike at one of Hitachi's plants, though the VP downplayed the incident and said it had only a small effect on its operations, pointing out that everything is back to normal.
Hitachi, which is in the process of being acquired by Western Digital, says it has no plans of following in the rumored footsteps of Seagate, which reportedly demanded its customers sign a one-year supply contract, locking them in at current prices.