back to article Seagate fscks up: Disk drive sales fall short by $500m

Seagate will miss its fourth quarter's sales target as its competitors recover faster than expected from floods that knackered hard drive supplies. The storage biz also had a quality-control issue with an enterprise disk product, which reduced shipments by 1.5 million units to 66 million, and increased costs. It issued a …


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  1. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Still A Tasty Profit Margin

    "$1.1bn profit on revenues of $4.4bn"

    Many a CEO would sell their soul for those margins, me smell cartel.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Still A Tasty Profit Margin

      33.6% GM is a cartel, right? Tell that to Intel with its 50% GM's or any software firm with >70% GM's. You get a great deal on harddrives, yet everyone bitches when they actually have to pay more for a 1TB hdd than a toaster. Unreal.

      And, Mellor, for your math:

      4.5B * 33.6% = 1.5B - 450 OpEx + assundries (call it 500 altogether) = $1B profit and not $500million.

      1. JEDIDIAH

        Re: Still A Tasty Profit Margin

        Intel? Are you kidding? They aren't just the poster-boy for cartels. They're the poster-boy for monpolies.

        Software has a marginal production cost of ZERO. So that's a bad example too.

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Still A Tasty Profit Margin


        You mean:

        Intel - convicted monopolist and anti competitive behaviour, fined by the EU

        Microsoft - convicted monopolist and anti competitive behaviour, fined by the EU

        Hitachi Fined $31 Million for Fixing LCD Prices by Department of Justice - HDD division is being bought by WD.

        IBM Settles Bribery Charge With $10 Million (DOJ)

        Hynix fined $185m for DRAM price fixing (DOJ)

        Shall I go on ?

        Engage brain before open mouth.

  2. jason 7

    Screw customers......

    ...they screw you back.

    Oh and SSDs are just so hot right now.

  3. Anonymous Coward
    Thumb Down

    Seagate Schmeegate

    I'd be happy with drives that don't fuckup with bad sectors, and "odd deaths" from poor quality.

    I'd like to see them come with rock solid reliability with a guaranteed minimum 24 / 7 - 3 to 5 year year life span.

    Ohhhh 2 months use.. bad sectors and failing.... Hmmmm another one?

    Good - arseholes.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Seagate Schmeegate

      I may be retail scum, but I haven't actually had many Seagate Expansion or GoFlex drives come back, about the same amount as Western Digital before this mess, maybe one or two a month. That said, we haven't seen virtually any more WD's filter down-under and are down to our consumer mid-level desktop drive stocks. Which no one wants to buy because they're so much more expensive than the Seagate equivalent...

      If you have something for me to check out though, I'd be happy to have a looksee.


      Re: Seagate Schmeegate

      Their winter of crapulence was like 3 years ago. Seagate had their time and took their knocks. Now it's time to move on and stop living in the past and actually make comments based on recent information.

      Seagate's aren't so bad now. What worries me now are SSDs that die suddenly with no warning.

    3. kb

      Re: Seagate Schmeegate

      If you can find some grab some Samsung or Hitachi drives before they are all gone, especially the Samsung Ecodrives. I was lucky enough to score plenty of them before the flood and I can tell you I've put those in places i would NEVER put a Seagate, such as construction trailers and warehouses and the things are tough as nails. I liked 'em so much even my boot drive is an Ecodrive even though they are only 5400RPM but thanks to the 32Mb cache the 1Tb ecodrives were scoring a good 30% higher than the Seagate 400Gb 7200RPM that it replaced.

      As for this? Maybe their quality will go back up but lately I've just not had much luck with Seagates, especially any of their consumer lines over 500Gb. I don't know what they are doing wrong, rumor floating around is they are using junk ARM controllers, but their drives over 500Gb just don't seem to last very long, they start throwing bad sectors or developing click death even on machines where they aren't being stressed.

      Sigh, I guess I'll have to go WD now, at least i haven't been seeing any major failures with their externals, but I'm really gonna miss Samsung and Hitachi, they both made really solid drives. I guess if their prices drop low enough you can always RAID 1 the Seagates and hope you don't get two drives that fail at the same time, but until I see feedback from places like Newegg that isn't got 20 low ratings for every decent I think I'll pass and their numbers tell me lots of other folks feel the same way. I'm just glad that even after making a healthy profit i still have 6Tb of samsung Ecogoodness to keep me happy for awhile.

  4. Joerg

    Idiot managers should cut prices and release huge disks now!

    The hard drive manufacturers managers need to cut down prices heavily and release huge 12TB to 100TB hard disks NOW! Not 2020..

    They already have the technology. They just decided to delay mass production to raise prices and avoid updating the factories with the new needed tech.

    It was already reported 3-4 years ago that Seagate and the other manufacturers already had the technology to manufacture up to 300TB hard disk drives if they wanted to. They were planning to start releasing products by 2012. Then these managers thieves changed their minds and decided to steal money from people with the Thailand flood fraud they have been allowed to do.

    1. {'-,_Ultron6_,-'}

      Re: Idiot managers should cut prices and release huge disks now!


      What a complete load of rubbish.

      1. JEDIDIAH

        Re: Idiot managers should cut prices and release huge disks now!

        Drive capacities have stagnated. That's a fact. They could drive new sales by pushing the boundaries a bit. They could finally release their 4TB drives in retail packaging and push the upper bound a little higher.

        Wouldn't hurt to improve sequential r/w performance either.

        1. James O'Brien

          Re: Idiot managers should cut prices and release huge disks now!

          Normally I wouldnt bother posting to something this far out but I'll humor you.

          While it may be true that capacities have stagnated I highly doubt its because they did you put it? Oh right, hiding the truth and yadatinfoil hatyada

          As far as sales go I dont believe that will be a problem really. Trouble with this market is that it has its ups and downs just like any other industry. That is not to say that they arnt always trying to get higher sales and with it higher revenues.

          As far as 4Tb (see what I did there?) drives, it helps if you get the term right. Anyway if the normal person (and by normal people whos job is NOT photographer, video editor, system admin or BOFH needing a place to stash some porn) should have zero need for that much. Hell my parents along with my youngest sister dont even use up half of the old 500Gb drive I gave them a while back. And this is with people who seem to not understand that you copy something to the drive once....not 10 times because you didnt like where the system put it the first time. But I digress.

          And even with all those other little things I pointed out you then want faster sequential r/w times to improve? Not asking for much there are you? There is only so fast that a drive can read data, and its main limiting factor is rotational speed. This is fairly simple to test but I wont bore you with logic since it seems you have none.

          Anyway have fun trolling the threads like usual. I only wish this was an Apple article though. At least then I could be sure that you were Webster Phreaky in disguise.

    2. Storage_Person

      Re: Idiot managers should cut prices and release huge disks now!

      They were talking about storage arrays, not single drives. The issues in Thailand might have put them 6 or so months behind their original schedule but they're not holding back on a ~10x increase in capacity for a lark.

      1. Joerg

        Re: Idiot managers should cut prices and release huge disks now!

        You people have no memories, can't remember news and can't even check with google so it seems...

        300TB hard drive to arrive by 2010

        Seagate stakes claim

        By Nick Farrell

        Wed Jan 03 2007, 08:12

        23 January 2010

        What happened to Seagate's 37.5TB hard drive for 2010?

        60TB disk drives could be a reality in 2016

        Hard disk drive industry will continue to grow despite SSD encroachment

        By Lucas Mearian

        May 22, 2012 11:14 AM ET

  5. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Seagate Acquiring Maxtor....

    may cause problems.

  6. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    Maybe someone is getting even for the price gouging?

  7. {'-,_Ultron6_,-'}

    @ Joerg

    What a load of utter rubbish. You select some really really really poor sources from years ago and then complain that the drivel they were spouting didn't come true.....and then you complain that the drive companies have some kind of conspiracy plan by holding back the tech. Loon.

    1. Joerg

      Re: @ Joerg

      You and other insulting me here clearly must be Seagate employees.

      No normal people would act like you do.

      Keep exposing yourselves.

      Insulting me is not going to prove anything nor debunk the obvious facts.

      1. {'-,_Ultron6_,-'}

        Re: @ Joerg

        OK I take the loon part back, and I do not work for seagate.

        You are still wrong and it just isn't cricket to spew false info. Do some research, learn about media and head technologies and then come back. The 300TB snippet was taken wildly out of context by your source and is in fact a theoretical limit before BPM is required. Go on, ask me what BPM is.

        On second thoughts, dont bother.

  8. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Having a virtual monopoly is what's held back higher capacity drives

    Why bother releasing higher capacity drives when you have virtually no competition and you can see all of your existing drives at such a high margin?

    Wait till your competitors recover then start releasing the new drives, it's standard business practice.

  9. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Capacity doesn't matter

    Disclaimer: I work in the storage industry. Vendor doesn't matter, as these considerations are common for all:

    The customers we have, who need the highest capacity, tend to require lots and lots of IOPS as well.

    Despite typically being ~x5 times faster on a random workload than a consumer NL-SAS/SATA drive, very often we cannot make use of the 900Gbyte enterprise SAS drives available today. We go smaller.

    Big drives doesn't match a big workload. Instead we need more spindles. Tiering helps us, but unless you wanna buy lots and lots of x100 more expensive SSDs, you still have to have a very significant primary disktier of "good enough" performance enterprise drives, before you can even begin thinking about stuffing large capacity 2/3/4 Tbyte drives into your datacenter for general usage.

    What really matters is: Density and power usage. As it really isn't realistic to gain more IOPS from spinning the drives 10x faster than todays disks, it is all about making drives physically smaller and run cooler, so we can cram more of them into a rack without melting.

    4 Tbyte NL-sas drives? Only for archiving or use in the households...

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