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Seagate Technology, the world’s largest maker of hard disk drives, may delay introduction of its solid-state drives to 2011 because of the issues with relationships between LSI Corp. and Seagate. According to analysts from Pacific Crest Securities, Seagate will have to utilize SSD controllers from other makers, which will delay the release of actual products rather tangibly.

“We heard that Seagate (the company we think is closest in terms of market penetration) had another setback in its efforts to design an enterprise storage drive to compete with ZeusIOPS. This effort centered on work the company was doing with LSI, (which) has experience in controller design in HDD. We believe that Seagate now will be forced to turn to a start-up company to find a potential solution, a setback that likely means there will no product available for testing until the middle of next year,” Kevin D Vassily, an analyst at investment bank Pacific Crest Securities, wrote in a note to customers, reports The Register web-site.

Early this year Seagate said that it would introduce enterprise-class solid-state drives in 2009, but did not provide any details. Seagate recently switched chief operating officer William Watkins to Stephen J. Luczo after Mr. Watkins failed to ensure strong positions of Seagate on the market of hard drives for mobile and portable applications, but also failed to start offering SSDs in the enterprise market segment at the dawn of solid-state drives on the mass market.

It is one of the key goals of Mr. Luczo to enter the market of solid-state drives, however, it seems that it may take up to two years for the company to truly enter the SSD market.

“Given that qualification of a product (based on STEC's experience) can take up to a year, it would seem that mid-2011 is the earliest that any competing product will likely be able to ship in any volume,” added Mr. Vassily.

Seagate did not comment on the report.

Tags: Seagate, SSD, Flash

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