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Thailand floods disrupt hard disk production

Thailand floods disrupt hard disk production

Thailand is the world's second largest exporter of hard disks.

Sustained monsoon rain has led to unusually heavy flooding in Thailand; a situation which is likely to have a major impact on the worldwide supply of hard disks.

The country, which is the world’s second largest hard disk exporter, plays home to many manufacturing plants belonging to the world’s biggest storage companies.

Hitachi, Toshiba, TDK, hard disk motor maker Nidec and PCBA maker Cal-Comp all have facilities in the country. While not all these companies have had their facilities flooded, many have been cut off or had supply lines disrupted.

Western Digital also has facilities in the country, and has already released a statement saying that it expects the flooding to ‘have significant impact on the company’s overall operations and its ability to meet customer demand for its products in the December quarter.'

Similarly, Seagate also expects its Thailand-based factories to operate at a reduced capacity due to disruption in the hard disk supply chain. This, it suggests, is likely to lead to hard drive supply being constrained throughout the current quarter.' With a supply shortage seemingly inevitable, it's also highly likely that the price of hard disks will increase.

Are you likely to be affected by the looming hard disk shortage? Let us know your thoughts in the forums.

37 Comments

Discuss in the forums Reply
Jamie 18th October 2011, 11:13 Quote
Google might notice, I doubt it'll affect your average Joe.
tozsam 18th October 2011, 11:40 Quote
damn, I've just bought a microserver which needs filling
runadumb 18th October 2011, 12:01 Quote
I will be buying a 3 TB drive in the not so distant future but I'm in no real hurry. As Jamie said, I doubt I will notice buying one drive.
WarrenJ 18th October 2011, 13:09 Quote
***witty comment about floating disks to go here***
ChromeX 18th October 2011, 13:19 Quote
So surely, with this news, IF you're in the market for a new hard disk or a couple of hard disks wouldnt it be best to buy right now before these price increases take hold?
Nexxo 18th October 2011, 14:36 Quote
Khun Bhunil Praphasirirat is a modest farmer in the Lampang province of Thailand, one of the hardest hit by the unusually heavy monsoons that have flooded a third of the country and left it in chaos. Only yesterday he and his family finally had to abandon their small home as it was engulfed by the ever rising waterline. His crops, the product of a year's hard toil, have been washed away. His small number of pigs, chickens and a few goats all drowned. Like his neighbours, his family faces destitution and homelessness. There is no food or water and the army and the Red Cross cannot get emergency supplies in fast enough, and fly people out. The province is in chaos. Last night the government expressed concern for the spread of disease through dirty water and overflowing sewage works.

But all this does not bother Mr. Praphasirirat or his wife, who bear up to the disaster with stoicism. "Never mind that we have lost our homes and our livelihood. We can cope with that, and with the families who drowned. So what if my children have not been dry and warm for over a week? So what if we have been eating mud because there is nothing else left? All that is meaningless compared to the suffering that people have to endure in the West!". His lip trembled as he continued with quavering voice: "Right now there are people who cannot upgrade their harddisks to accommodate the latest game release, or store more porn and pirated music!". Mr. Praphasirirat shuddered at the horror, and then finally broke. Falling to his knees, his arms outstretched to the sky he cried: "Those poor computer geeks! IS THERE NO GOD?!?"
Bede 18th October 2011, 15:04 Quote
You know you're a geek when the first time you hear about these floods is when it affects HDD supply :D
Deadpunkdave 18th October 2011, 15:52 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bede
You know you're a geek when the first time you hear about these floods is when it affects HDD supply :D

Nope, that's how you know you live in a country which really doesn't care. Or at least one where gradual disasters don't warrant TV coverage. 315 people have died in the flooding and tens of thousands made homeless but its been over the course of several months so it doesn't get reported on.
jrs77 18th October 2011, 16:06 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nexxo
Khun Bhunil Praphasirirat is a modest farmer in the Lampang province of Thailand, one of the hardest hit by the unusually heavy monsoons that have flooded a third of the country and left it in chaos. Only yesterday he and his family finally had to abandon their small home as it was engulfed by the ever rising waterline. His crops, the product of a year's hard toil, have been washed away. His small number of pigs, chickens and a few goats all drowned. Like his neighbours, his family faces destitution and homelessness. There is no food or water and the army and the Red Cross cannot get emergency supplies in fast enough, and fly people out. The province is in chaos. Last night the government expressed concern for the spread of disease through dirty water and overflowing sewage works.

But all this does not bother Mr. Praphasirirat or his wife, who bear up to the disaster with stoicism. "Never mind that we have lost our homes and our livelihood. We can cope with that, and with the families who drowned. So what if my children have not been dry and warm for over a week? So what if we have been eating mud because there is nothing else left? All that is meaningless compared to the suffering that people have to endure in the West!". His lip trembled as he continued with quavering voice: "Right now there are people who cannot upgrade their harddisks to accommodate the latest game release, or store more porn and pirated music!". Mr. Praphasirirat shuddered at the horror, and then finally broke. Falling to his knees, his arms outstretched to the sky he cried: "Those poor computer geeks! IS THERE NO GOD?!?"

/exactly!
Phil Rhodes 19th October 2011, 01:10 Quote
Oh, no, we'll have to set up a manufacturing plant in the UK!

No, wait, manufacture something in the UK?! That's unthinkable!
Xir 19th October 2011, 08:38 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Deadpunkdave
Or at least one where gradual disasters don't warrant TV coverage. 315 people have died in the flooding and tens of thousands made homeless but its been over the course of several months so it doesn't get reported on.
this.
Plus...it's not really news, is it? It's not called a floodplain for nothing now.
There's an annual flooding, but this year it's worse.
Agriculture relies on these floodings to bring fresh soil, and once every xxx years, it's worse, and they start from scratch.
Happend to them before, happened to their fathers and happened to their grandfathers.

Same in Bangladesh...people scraping a living out of the soil were once again totally surprised by the unexpected annual flood. Once a year the river rises, the gods must be angry.

Not that the west is any better.
In the Netherlands we have a village that lies in a flood meadow ...every couple of years, these poor fellows get wet feet, we have to save them, have to give them money to repaint the town, there poor people, that nasty river.
No.
Folks, if you live in a place that floods every 3-5 years, it's not a catastrofe, it's a decision.
You cope with it or you go...social darwinism at it's best
Bede 19th October 2011, 10:05 Quote
^ +1. It's unfortunate, but a fact of life.
Nexxo 19th October 2011, 10:16 Quote
Except that almost the whole of the Netherlands is a flood plain. A few years ago, even Arnhem, high up East and close to the hilly German border, was one inch away from flooding. So where are these people going to live?

Same with Thailand. Half of the country is flood plain. Where they gonna go? Should we blame the Japanese for living on a vault line too?
Xir 19th October 2011, 10:19 Quote
I'm sorry if I sound harsch.
People hit by catastrophe's need and deserve help, no doubt, and my deepest respect to anyone that's helping.
It's just a question when a foreseable event is classified as a catastrophe.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nexxo
Except that almost the whole of the Netherlands is a flood plain. A few years ago, even Arnhem, high up East and close to the hilly German border, was one inch away from flooding. So where are these people going to live?
I'm not saying they should move, far from it. But (as the dutch know) if you live on the water, you'll need to live with this danger, cope with it. The Arnhem dyke was built to withstand a once-every-300-years flood right? So when a flood higher than that comes, yes, that IS a catastrophe.
An regularly reocurring flooding of the "Uiterwaarden"* (ehmmm, the plain between the innerdyke and the outerdyke) is not.

Cologne's inner city is flooded by the Rhine every few years. It's "Normal" for them. They've prepared their homes and shops, clean up afterwards an continue.

*dutch word for a floodplain that's SUPPOSED to fill up
mrbens 19th October 2011, 12:38 Quote
Price has already gone up about £8 for 2TB drives since I bought one for around £51 a few weeks ago.
mrbens 19th October 2011, 12:38 Quote
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Waynio 19th October 2011, 15:49 Quote
Personally I couldn't give a sheet about a slowdown or pause rather of HDD production & to be honest I'd be happy to pay £20 over usual cost if that £20 went to the places that need it & not the shops selling them, just hope they have a speedy recovery from the floods, covered a flipping massive area :(.

I think they deserve a returned favor for producing them so cheaply for us really, think any shops will do this, I doubt it but would be a nice thing to do.
RichCreedy 19th October 2011, 16:53 Quote
umm i've noticed, trying to get wd drive from suppliers who have zero stock, had to resort to slightly higher price from ebuyer
SirFur 20th October 2011, 16:42 Quote
Looks like it may be the end of the present cheap prices of HDDs we have been enjoying for so long....
littlepuppi 21st October 2011, 21:19 Quote
This looks like prices are really rocketing now, if reports that the factory that makes 70 percent of the motors for the worlds hard drives is now underwater, then who knows where prices will go in the next few months...
Waynio 22nd October 2011, 16:03 Quote
Only way I'd pay £20 over the old price is if the extra was going to aid Thailand & there's no notes of this on shops websites so no way would I buy right now .
Xir 24th October 2011, 09:11 Quote
I must again apologise.
The flood in Thailand has been a lot more severe as "the usual".
It is (rapidly turning into) a catastrophe, my condolences and the best of luck down there.
mrbens 26th October 2011, 08:15 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by mrbens
Price has already gone up about £8 for 2TB drives since I bought one for around £51 a few weeks ago.

Price now minimum £82 for a 2TB drive!!!
Waynio 27th October 2011, 07:36 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by mrbens
Price now minimum £82 for a 2TB drive!!!

Holy sheet, 2TB samsung f4 hdd the other week was about £56 it is now priced £120 as if no new ones will ever be made, wow.
mrbens 27th October 2011, 13:07 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by Waynio
Holy sheet, 2TB samsung f4 hdd the other week was about £56 it is now priced £120 as if no new ones will ever be made, wow.

I just came here to say the same! Now minimum £100 for a 2TB drive!!!
Bede 27th October 2011, 13:46 Quote
Let's hope none of us have catastrophic HDD failure in the next few months :D
mrbens 27th October 2011, 16:47 Quote
It's annoying because if they were still around £50 for 2TB I'd have bought one this week!
DC74 27th October 2011, 17:10 Quote
I've noticed that the price seems to have doubled, strange since the flooded country is the SECOND biggest HDD manufacturer. Now I could understand if the biggest one had flooded and prices doubled, but I'm starting to think that suppliers are profiteering from an unfortunate event.

Its about time we had a HDD manufacturing plant in Europe, preferably in the UK. It makes no sense to keep all your eggs in one basket.
Jackg 27th October 2011, 17:14 Quote
I was going to buy the spinpoint f3. Bit different now its £94 on scan.
debs3759 27th October 2011, 17:26 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by DC74
Its about time we had a HDD manufacturing plant in Europe, preferably in the UK. It makes no sense to keep all your eggs in one basket.

Yeah, it would be great to have a European HDD manufacturer, but if it ever happens then (at least as far as Western Europe is concerned) it's more likely to happen in Germany, as that is the technological capital of Europe. I don't know why, but if the technological infrastructure already exists there that would make more sense.

Besides, didn't Britain give up being a manufacturing country a long time ago?
Another_level 27th October 2011, 17:31 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by DC74
I've noticed that the price seems to have doubled, strange since the flooded country is the SECOND biggest HDD manufacturer. Now I could understand if the biggest one had flooded and prices doubled, but I'm starting to think that suppliers are profiteering from an unfortunate event.

I also think the suppliers are profiteering too.
Fizzban 27th October 2011, 19:26 Quote
I checked on Scan after this news to see prices. They had shot up from £40 to £60..which is going back what, 2 years? Then when I went there yesterday to buy something, I checked again. The same drive was near as makes no difference £90. Go there today and it is nearly £98.

The drive in question? My old fav, the Samsung 1Tb Spinpoint F3.

Those prices are C.R.A.Z.Y! I pity the fools who know no better and buy a HD at this point in time...
Waynio 28th October 2011, 03:15 Quote
Wouldn't bother me so much if the extra was going to aid Thailand but just looks like shops cashing in big time from it business is ruthless.

I wonder if they will keep rising in cost .
coolamasta 28th October 2011, 16:03 Quote
Ouch, was going to buy 3 x Samsung 2TB's today for my new NAS and me arse dropped out when I seen the prices of them!!

I knew about the flooding in Thailand but never know HDD's would double in price because of it! :'(
Oaber 31st October 2011, 15:53 Quote
The drives I bought on Feb for £65 went to 50something couple of weeks ago, now they are £110...
DraigUK 1st November 2011, 13:44 Quote
My Dad fried his 2TB drive the other day. He paid about £60 for it on Ebuyer. Same drive is now about £110.

I found an old 250GB and put that in and told him to make do until the prices are back to being reasonable.
towelie 11th November 2011, 11:22 Quote
Prays my 4 X 2TB drives in my NAS last the WINTER
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