Analyst: PC hard drive units won't recover fully until 2013

The Thailand floods that have greatly affected the manufacturers of PC hard drives this year will finally start their recovery in early 2012, but it's going to be a long time before hard drive supplies come back to the level that they were available before the floods in Thailand knocked out a number of manufacturing plants.

That's the verdict from research firm IDC, according to a new story at According to the firm's analyst John Rydning, "I think the most painful period will occur now through February of next year. We expect the situation will improve, but it won't feel as if things are back to normal until 2013."

How bad is the current hard drive shortage? In an email sent by PC maker Lenovo to corporate IT customers, the company compared the current situation to what banks had to deal with in the Great Depression. Lenovo stated, "Akin to the hysteria when banks defaulted in the 1930[s], PC orders across the industry are being placed for which HD supply does not exist." Lenovo also said in the email that it is currently out of stock of several hard drives for its ThinkPad notebooks.

Hard drive prices have risen by as much as 100 percent or more since the shortage issues began. While there are some indications that the price increases have peaked for some hard drives its clear that they will continue to be higher than normal for a while.

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