Data storage manufacturer Western Digital (WD) was recently accused of crippling the performance of one of its very popular budget NVMe SSDs - the Blue SN550. It was found that the company was selling a newer variant of the product which apparently would lose about half of its performance, compared to the original one, once it had saturated its available12GB single-level cell (SLC) cache.
The new SN550 was packing a newer flash version dubbed "002031 1T00" and consequently, carrying a new firmware too. Once the 12GB SLC cache was filled up, the write speed of the new drive would drop down to below 400MB/s whereas the original version could do close to twice that.
The firm however has accepted this accusation of handicapping the SN550, according to a report by The Register. Here's a part of the statement WD offered to the media outlet:
In June 2021, we replaced the NAND in the WD Blue SN550 NVMe SSD and updated the firmware
For greater transparency going forward, if we make a change to an existing internal SSD, we commit to introducing a new model number whenever any related published specifications are impacted.
So it seems WD is coming clean about the whole matter and has also promised to be more forthcoming about any underlying specification changes it makes to existing products. Newer variants of such products will now be marketed under a new product name so buyers find it easier to distinguish the different available revisions.
Source: The Register