As large as our world is, industries sometimes converge geographically because of local policy, labor prices, and convenience. Such is the case in Thailand, a place that hosts many of the world’s hard disk manufacturing facilities – and a place that’s recently been struck by tragic flooding.
Because of the floodwaters, companies like Western Digital have had their supply of products drastically cut. Some analysts began to warn of potential price increases several weeks ago, but they are just now becoming a reality.
Western Digital’s Caviar Green 2TB hard drive, available through Amazon.com, has soared from a price low of $69.99 on October 15th to a price high of $149.99 on October 28th. While some other retailers do still offer the drive for under $100, their number seems to dwindle with each passing day. Other hard drive manufacturers have been impacted as well, which means they too have increased prices.
It’s hard to say when prices will return to normal, as the flooding in Thailand is ongoing and no one knows when the floodwaters will recede. Readers in the market for a hard drive should likely hold off on the purchase and keep an eye on price tracking services and extensions.
Alternatively, this could be a good time to justify spending money on a solid state drive. The flash memory used in them is made at different facilities, so SSD pricing shouldn’t be impacted (and has not been so far). Solid state drives will remain much more expensive per gigabyte of storage than their mechanical brethren, but this turn of events does close the gap a bit.
If you know of any online places where the prices for hard drives still remains cheap, help out your fellow readers by letting them know in the comments.