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SSD to Fully Replace HD on Laptops in 2020

Gurvan Meyer, Business Enterprise Analyst at CONTEXT

The adoption of SSDs for primary storage accelerated during the fourth quarter of 2019 as the volume of HDD PCs – notebooks, desktops and workstations – sold through the Western Europe (WE) IT distribution channel fell to 9.4%, according to the latest data published by CONTEXT, the IT market intelligence company.

As expected, 93.3% of new laptop PCs sold in Q4 2019 had SSDs as their primary storage component, up from 66.7% at the end of 2017.

More surprisingly, SSDs are also increasingly being used in desktops with the proportion of new devices using them reaching 82% at the end of 2019, up from 48.5% in 2017.

The adoption of SSDs is fastest in Nordics and The Netherlands which had an almost HDD-less PC market by the end of 2019 with the components used in only around 2% of PCs, inclusive of laptop and desktop. Germany follows – there, SSD share of the overall PC market is 93.4% – and the UK completes the podium with only 9.9% of PCs sold in the country in Q4 2019 containing HDDs. The transition is slower in Southern Europe where an average of 85% of PCs sold at the end of 2019 came with SSDs.

The sharp fall in price per gigabyte observed in 2019 is the main driver of accelerating SSD adoption as it enables vendors to sell SSD configurations at competitive prices”, said Gurvan Meyer, Business Enterprise Analyst at CONTEXT. “Meanwhile, online storage services are getting cheaper, and the use of streaming online services more common, so there is less need for high-capacity local storage. Vendors can therefore sell models with less storage and this, too, is supporting the transition towards SSDs. And, last but not least, the majority of consumers have now experienced the advantages that SSDs bring to day-to-day computer use so are happy to pay a little more for a machine with this type of storage.

Given these trends, it is pretty safe to say that, by the end of 2020, no new laptop sold in Western Europe will have HDD as the primary storage component – and there’s not much doubt the desktop segment will follow closely in 2021.

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