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Big HDDs Set New Sales Record: 288 Exabytes in Q1

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Unit shipments of hard drives in the first quarter of 2021 were down both sequentially and year-over-year as consumer devices continued their migration to SSDs. Still, HDD capacity sold during the quarter set a new record of 288 exabytes as hyperscalers and enterprises upgraded their storage capabilities. Seagate remained the world's largest maker of hard drives in terms of units and exabytes (EB) shipped. 

The industry shipped as many as 83.981 million PCs in Q1 2021, according to IDC. Meanwhile, only about 34.97 million hard drives for consumer PCs were sold last quarter (based on data from Trendfocus), so nearly 60% of personal computers shipped in Q1 used SSDs. This is not particularly surprising as many modern notebooks cannot house a hard drive. In contrast, enthusiast and workstation-grade desktops use SSDs because HDDs are rather slow for modern workloads by today's standards


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