Fujitsu ramps up hard disc business to address new markets


Fujitsu ramps up hard disc business to address new markets

Antony Savvas

Fujitsu is ramping up its hard disc manufacturing business and moving into different markets to keep up with demand for changing formats.

Fujitsu estimates worldwide demand for 2.5-inch mobile PC drives will rise from 8.1 million units in 2005 to 21 million by 2010. It also estimates that demand for 1.8-inch drives will rise from 1.6 million units to nine million units over the same period.

The company plans to increase its overall hard drive shipments to 5.4 million by 2008, which is just over double the 2.6 million drives it shipped in 2005.

To achieve this expansion the company will focus on the expanding 2.5-inch market for laptop and consumer electronics products, and move into the market for 1.8-inch drives designed for laptops and products such as portable digital music players.

The company will also start making 2.5-inch drives for servers. Fujitsu said that in 2005, the non-IT market represented only about 20% of the overall drive market. But it said this is expected to grow to one-third in 2008 and 44% in 2010.

One of the fastest-growing segments is for 1.8-inch hard disc drives, which are used in products such as Apple’s iPod music player. To enter this market Fujitsu is jointly developing a 1.8-inch drive with manufacturer Cornice.

The pair expect to have their first 1.8-inch offering available on the market by autumn 2007.

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