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Say Hello To Cheap Solid-State Drives, Goodbye To Hard Disk Drives As SSD Prices Drop

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Back in the day, a solid-state drive would cost an arm and a leg. Superior to regular hard drives in durability, speed and weight, SSDs then were still just too expensive to go mainstream.

The reign of HDDs in the storage space arena is thinning, however, as SSDs get cheaper and cheaper every quarter

Based on a report by TrendForce, prices for solid-state drives have indeed fallen over the years. In fact, the drop in SSD prices is so steep that they may cost no more than a regular hard drive in just a few short years. Eventually, SSDs should come at a price point equal to that of HDDs and we can finally say goodbye to spinning magnetic platters.

That will be a good thing because faster computers will be more energy efficient, quieter and less likely to break. Fortunately, we're already seeing SSDs in some vendors' affordable and high-end products (even though those usually top out at small storage amounts such as 128 GB for the entry level models).

Unfortunately, HDDs still remain even in the most advanced pieces of hardware like in Apple's 21.5-inch iMac with 4K Retina display released late this year. By 2016, SSDs are expected to be in more than one-third of all new consumer laptops.

"To consume more capacity and gain market share, NAND Flash suppliers will maintain their aggressive pricing strategy into the first half of 2016," TrendForce notes in its report.

The industry's two biggest players, Samsung and SanDisk, will be in even more products as nearly half of new laptops are expected to be SSD-equipped by 2017.

Three years ago, the price per gigabyte for SSDs was 99 cents. From 2013 to today, prices have dropped from 68 cents to just 39 cents. By next year, prices might be reduced even further, and even further to a more affordable 17 cents per gigabyte come 2017. That means a 1 TB SSD would cost as little as $170 whereas they still cost about $390 today.

All these projections are, well, just projections. As with any classic data extrapolation, TrendForce is just trying to connect the dots toward the future based on where the numbers are today. Besides, HDDs are still bigger, and at the more massive storage quantities, it will take much, much longer for SSDs to compare. Until then, us regular folks who are more than content with an average 1 TB of storage should be more than happy with the ever decreasing SSD prices.

Photo: Blake Patterson | Flickr

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