Over breakfast with Jon van Bronkhorst of Seagate this morning, we chewed over the opportunities for digital storage ranging from cloud computing companies (not as great as the hype would make it appear), the future of solid state drives (growing, but not there yet), and consumer sales.
I'm always looking for a silver lining in this economy and van Bronkhorst says there is one in retail sales. “We've been surprised on the upside in terms of units sold,” he says. It turns out, perhaps not so surprisingly, that people look at storage as a necessity. In other words, I may not buy a new PC this year, but storage? I could use more. There are drives for backing up, small business network support, stashing media like music, photos, and video, and even DVR extenders. (Regarding the last, beware that if you hang a hard drive off your digital video recorder box and the box fails—as they are wont to do—the stuff stored on the hard drive becomes inaccessible too.)
There's also the magic tipping point. When terabyte drives are just over $100, people start buying them in droves. Naturally, Seagate will have some nifty new options to feed these markets coming out in the next couple of months. The company will even get into the SSD market for corporate customers later this year.
Oh, and about that $1,000 omelet, I did not indulge, tempted as I was to try eggs stuffed with enough Sevruga caviar to pay for my mortgage. I was more in the mood for Ossetra, anyway.
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