Analyst house Trendforce has predicted that the average selling price of NAND Flash, the building block of all, will be high SSD (Solid State Drives) and microSD cards will fall by as much as 15% in the current quarter. It’s already down nearly 25% in the last quarter, prompting the biggest manufacturers to; Kioxia, Solidigm, Micron and WDC are cutting production to reduce supply on the market.
Weak consumer demand and Enterprise SSD Customers coupled with Samsung’s reluctance to produce as much NAND as possible means that the price erosion we’ve seen in SSD and microSD products over the past 12 months is likely to continue unabated, with smaller capacities being phased out become.
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Samsung is the largest NAND Flash vendor and has already committed to investing heavily in R&D to stay ahead of the competition. SK Hynix and Micron announced their launch in 2022 238 layer And 232 layer Products that – on paper – will drastically reduce the terabyte cost of solid state drives.
For obvious reasons, no provider has released yet SPS (Penta Level Cell) NAND, the next technological breakthrough that will enable even cheaper, high-capacity SSDs.
Data bloodbath until Christmas 2023?
The cheapest 1TB microSD cards are currently sold on Amazon for around $75, down almost 50% year-on-year. While we don’t expect prices to halve, another 30% drop by the end of the year seems reasonable, which would bring the price of a 1TB microSD card closer to $50.
This would impact smaller capacities (512GB, 256GB, 128GB) and we expect 64GB and 32GB microSD to be pushed out of the market altogether.
The same applies to USB sticks where the cheapest true 256GB models currently sell for around $10, with vendors resorting to multi-pack deals to lure customers with smaller capacities. The fact that many newer laptops lack a Type-A port or microSD card slot also dramatically reduces the size of the overall addressable market.
The most exciting market remains the SSD market, where customers are having an absolute field day as prices continue to drop. The cheapest SSD per TB at the time of writing is the Leven JS600 ($74.99 for 1.92 TB), a further drop of about 30% over the next nine months will see it paired with lower capacity drives like the Seagate Barracuda ST2000DM008 draws level.
These cheap models are 2.5 inches tall SATA Storage devices and because they are de facto Equipped with a SATA connection, they should also quickly displace external hard drives with a capacity of up to 2 TB. However, two trends should be noted: 2.5-inch drives are on the decline and are being replaced by M.2 PCIe drives.
Larger capacity hard drives are safe for now, but it’s only a matter of time before the next tier (3TB, 4TB) is on the way. A 4TB Leven SSD costs $180, which is still about double the price of, say, a 4TB WD Passport drive.
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