Now is not the time to buy a mechanical hard drive, not unless you absolutely have to. As you know, the recent flooding in Thailand hit the hard drive industry pretty hard (from a technology standpoint -- obviously the biggest tragedy here is the impact it had on people's lives), and even just a 1TB hard drive is going to set you back about $150 street, almost triple what they selling for prior to the flood. Is the shortage really that bad?
You may have already noticed that the cost of hard drives has shot up since the severe flooding in Thailand. In addition to bringing devastation to the people and economy in that region, the flooding also disrupted operations at more than a dozen hard drive factories, resulting in "significant" damage. According to the International Data Corporation (IDC), this will have a direct impact on worldwide PC shipments through at least the first half of 2012.
The impact of flooding in Thailand on PC inventories going into the holiday has been widely reported, but an obvious connection we’ve been missing has been raised by the New York Times, and it’s an important one. According to interviews conducted by Nick Bilton, cloud computing could grind to a halt early next year as storage prices skyrocket, and supply reaches historic lows. Flooding in the region has shuttered more than 1,000 factories, including several which are responsible for pumping out a significant percentage of the world’s mechanical hard drives.
A few days ago we were speculating, along with the rest of the web, that the massive flooding in Thailand could end up playing havoc with the mechanical drive industry. New images of Western Digital’s flagship production facility just barely above water have surfaced (no pun intended), along with dire predictions from CEO John Coyne. According to Coyne, the water damage will result in significantly reduced hard drive supplies going into 2012.
Need more storage space? If you don't fancy yourself a gambler, it's a good idea to shop hard drives now rather than roll the dice that prices for mechanical storage will stay dirt cheap. The flooding in Thailand hit the hard drive industry pretty hard and it's now expected that HDD prices will go up as component costs rise and inventory gets low.