SOLVED Seagate to take over Samsung's Hard Drive business


Nibiru2012

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Seagate to take over Samsung's Hard Drive business by John Gillooly on Apr 20, 2011

The number of hard drive manufacturers drops to three as Seagate gets its hands on Samsung's drive business.

And then there were three. The once diverse hard drive market got a little smaller overnight, with Seagate announcing that it would be taking over Samsung’s hard drive business. In a mutually beneficial deal Samsung will supply the NAND flash chips for Seagate’s enterprise SSD and Hybrid drive business, while Seagate will provide Samsung with the hard drives it needs for its computer business.

This, and the recent acquisition of Hitachi’s ex-IBM hard drive division by Western Digital, means that there are now only three companies in the hard drive market. Toshiba is the third, minor player, with 10% share, leaving both Western Digital and Seagate as the main suppliers of most of the world’s hard drives.

Just what this will mean for the rapidly dropping price of storage will be fascinating. Samsung has been a long term player in the hard drive business, but in recent years it presence has been a lot more prominent in the retail hard drive market. Samsung drives have appeared to be the ones to drop in price first, so it will be interesting to see if this will change under the Seagate moniker.

The other fascinating thing will be seeing what this means for the SSD market. Solid State Drives are the main threat to traditional hard drives, although price per gigabyte is still orders of magnitude larger. Seagate currently sells a line of Pulsar branded SSDs, which are targeted purely at high end enterprise operations. For consumers it has the Momentus XT line of 2.5in drives, which it calls hybrids. They have a small amount of fast SLC flash onboard, and firmware that uses this to mirror the most accessed files on the drive.

It will also be fascinating to see what effect this has on Samsung putting Flash storage into its computing products. The newly launched luxury Series 9 laptop uses solid state storage to achieve its thin and light status, and as Samsung becomes more aggressively competitive with products like Apple’s Macbook Air, we can envisage more and more flash being used to prolong battery life and speed up PCs. Given that Samsung loves to tout the fact that it makes all the bits inside its products, relinquishing control of hard drive based storage seems to indicate that we’ll see more focus on Flash memory moving forward.

Copyright © Australian PC & Tech Authority. All rights reserved.
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Crap, crap, and more crap! This upsets me a little because Seagate has been having a lot of quality control issues with their hard drives lately. That's why I switched to Samsung drives, plus they're less expensive than Seagate drives and perform better too.

Maybe it's because Seagate needs the quality that Samsung has, and Samsung needs what from Seagate? Who will produce the Samsung drives now?

Is this the initial death knell of HHD and such?

You watch and see... Samsung HDD will go up in price and the quality will now suffer. Better get them now while the getting is good is all I say.
 
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yodap

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I think (hope) Seagate has gotten over the hump. Almost all of their problems started when they bought Maxtor and started selling those pos's under their name. They now have control over that facility and qc has been better.
 

catilley1092

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Seagate does have good HDD's. I'm considering one of those 500GB hybrid ones for my notebook. Although not quite as fast as SSD's, they come close, by getting used to one's computing habits.

I was considering a 750GB one, but on Newegg, there were many complaints of vibration (perhaps the size of the HDD is the cause). The 500GB ones of the same brand has excellent reviews, which is the size that I have. The one that I already have, I can leave "as is" just in case I need it in the future.

One thing that these mergers creates is less choices, which leads to higher prices. HDD prices are in a deep plunge (many 1.5TB HDD's can be had for $59.99, 2TB for $69.99). I hope this doesn't cause a huge price increase for us all.

Cat
 

Thrax

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The good thing about the HDD industry is that Seagate and Western Digital can only compete on price. Neither company has a technological advantage, so we win with great pricing in the end.
 

Nibiru2012

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The good thing about the HDD industry is that Seagate and Western Digital can only compete on price. Neither company has a technological advantage, so we win with great pricing in the end.
Thanks Thrax! As for me, I'm going to stick with Samsung until they're no longer available as Samsung produced units, then it's Western Digital for me.

I believe the "jury" is still out on hybrid hard drives. My OCZ Vertex 2 SSD is running better than ever and is lightning fast. From now on I'll only be using hard drives for storage and such.
 
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catilley1092

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I agree, the jury is still out on those drives. But those hybrid HDD's offers a significant boost in speed for only a few more dollars. And are built by respectable HDD companies.

They're probably intended for those who really wants SSD's, but can't afford them yet. Too, if they turn out to be good (many has a 3 year warranty), it could force SSD prices down, in the long run.

If these Hybrid HDD's can just give 75% of the advertised boost of speed, and hold up, they're worth the few extra bucks. The bad ratings on the Seagate 750GB ones are 2'5" notebook HDD's, which is a lot of drive to pack in there. A 500GB one of the same brand has excellent ratings (quiet, low vibration, fast).

I know that the warranty isn't everything, but it gives peace of mind that the company will stand behind it that long. Plus this technology wasn't born yesterday, it's only beginning to emerge as another choice for us all, which will be good for us all.

Samsung was one of the first to come up with this type of technology, before Vista even hit the shelves.
http://news.cnet.com/Samsung-hybrid-hard-drive-works-while-it-sleeps/2100-1041_3-5683836.html

Cat
 

Nibiru2012

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Here's a better, more concise article from Benchmark reviews.com

Samsung to Combine Hard Disk Drive Operations into Seagate

Samsung to Receive Significant Equity Ownership in Seagate

Seagate Technology plc, the world leader in hard disk drives and storage solutions, and Samsung Electronics Co., Ltd., a world leader in digital consumer electronics and information technology, today announced that they have entered into a definitive agreement under which Seagate and Samsung will significantly expand and strengthen their strategic relationship by further aligning their respective ownership, investments and key technologies. Major elements of the agreement include:

  • Samsung combining its hard disk drive (HDD) operations into Seagate
  • Extending and enhancing the existing patent cross-license agreement between the companies
  • A NAND flash memory supply agreement under which Samsung will provide Seagate with its market-leading semiconductor products for use in Seagate's enterprise solid state drives (SSDs), solid state hybrid drives and other products
  • A disk drive supply agreement under which Seagate will supply disk drives to Samsung for PCs, notebooks and consumer electronics
  • Expanded cooperation between the companies to co-develop enterprise storage solutions
  • Samsung receiving significant equity ownership in Seagate
  • A shareholder agreement under which an executive of Samsung will be nominated to join Seagate's Board of Directors
  • The combined value of these transactions and agreements is approximately $1.375 billion USD, which will be paid by Seagate to Samsung in the form of 50% stock and 50% cash.
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Just from what I am reading here, maybe I'm reading more into this than necessary, it looks like Seagate needs Samsung more than Samsung needs Seagate.
 
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catilley1092

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I agree. Seagate has a lot to gain in this. I have HDD's from most of the major brands, the Samsung that I bought last year is the best of the lot.

Hopefully, Samsung's quality won't be watered down by this move. I don't know what happened to WD, but their HDD's, you get a good one one time, a bad one the next. No matter the price level or name of the drive (even the Caviar Black), it's this way.

Samsung has produced quality across the board for many consumer products for a long time, and hopefully that won't change. I'd buy their HDD's over any other.

Cat
 

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