Hard drive manufacturers Seagate Technology and Western Digital face an uphill battle in attempting to sustain sales of traditional rotating-disk drives in the coming years. It all comes down to the price. Traditional storage drives currently cost around 7 to 8 cents per usable gigabyte, whereas even the best-priced SSDs cost over $0.40 per usable gigabyte. SSD prices have been falling drastically in the last few years as demand has picked up. Prices are likely to continue to drop in the coming years, thereby posing a major threat to hard drive makers such as Seagate and Western Digital. Samsung leads the pack of SSD manufacturers with a commanding 40% share in the SSD market. This report focuses on the entire hard disk drive market food chain, analyzing the markets for hard disk drives, substrates, and thin film heads. Processing issues in the manufacture of each of these sectors in included and the report details the CMP and Lithography sectors of thin film head processing. Market forecasts and market shares of all sectors are detailed. The SSD market is also analyzed.
A number of technical and operational trends within the semiconductor manufacturing industry are strengthening the need for more effective advanced equipment solutions. These trends include: Development of Smaller Semiconductor Features. The development of smaller features, now as small as 20nm in production and 10nm in R&D, enables semiconductor manufacturers to produce larger numbers of circuits per wafer and to achieve higher circuit performance. Transition to 3D device structures. Foundries are adopting 3D FinFET transistors starting at 14/16 nm technology nodes to get improved performance and use less power in 1x technology nodes. Memory makers will move to 3D NAND and vertical structures for next generation NAND technology. Transition to 3D Integration Technology. Three-dimensional (3D) integration of active devices, directly connecting multiple IC chips, offers many benefits, including power efficiency, performance enhancements, significant product miniaturization, and cost reduction.
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