Notebook SSDs Suffering High Failure Rates

The price of progress?

Regardless of whether you can actually afford an SSD-fitted notebook you will almost certainly want one, for example the Sony Vaio TZ or Toshiba Portégé R500. But hold back a second because according to one report, those among us who have already joined the future aren’t as pleased as you might think, with one (undisclosed) manufacturer suggesting a 30 per cent return rate for solid-state drive fitted machines. This, according to analyst group Avian Securities.

Of those returns about 20 per cent are from outright failures, discounting those not related to the drive, and the remainder is made up of customers unimpressed with the performance of their notebooks. In our experience we haven’t exactly seen any improvement in operating speeds with an SSD fitted, although there was no noticeable slow down either so there seems no good reason for buyers to be underwhelmed. One can’t help but think the same customers would probably have returned a conventional drive-fitted system for the same reason.

Flipping back to failure rates, though, the same manufacturer claiming 20 per cent failure rates for SSD drives had only two per cent of notebooks returned because of ‘normal’ hard-drive malfunction. The implication being that there is a systemic problem with the drives themselves.

Not knowing who this unnamed manufacturer makes it hard to evaluate how telling, or even relevant, this report is in respect to the majority of potential customers. Given that there is a very small selection of available sources for SSDs right now, though, it seems reasonable to assume that the problem could well affect a large proportion of SSD-buyers. Still, you pays your money you takes your choice.

Avian Securities.

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