Seagate CEO Stephen J. Luczo has had some interesting choice words to say about how SSDs are used. In an earnings call to investors, Luczo noted that “no one uses SSDs for storage”. Coming from a hard drive sector that is on the decline as SSDs are ascending, those are pretty strong words.
There is truth to those words for both data centres and consumers at large. Due to the still prohibitive cost of SSDs, most consumers who have SSDs tend to only keep their OS and applications on their SSDs and store their multimedia and backups on their HDDs. The same goes for data centres where only hot data is cached to SSDs and most things are still stored to spinners.
However, hard drive shipments are on the decline as SSDs drop both in price and increase in capacity. Even Luczo, to his credit, is forced to admit a few % of users use SSDs all the way. Seagate has also tried to respond by pushing hybrid drives, their own SSDs and even buying the once great SSD controller firm Sandforce. Even if the continuing growth of cloud services might help boost hard drive use in the short term, Seagate, WD and Toshiba must either continue to grow value and capacity ahead of SSDs or face obsolescence.