WD outships Seagate as hard drive prices remain low

The numbers are in, and according to PC Magazine, Western Digital shipped more hard drives than its rival Seagate in the fourth quarter of 2010. At the same time, the publication says Seagate managed to pull in greater revenue because of its "stronger enterprise presence."

PC Magazine quotes 52.2 million hard-drive shipments for WD and 48.9 million for Seagate. On the revenue side of things, WD reportedly enjoyed $2.475 billion to Seagate's $2.7 billion, although WD actually managed to generate greater net income than its chief competitor: $225 million versus $150 million.

Despite their respective victories, neither company sounds too ecstatic about the quarter. WD CEO John Coyne lamented "sharply declining" average selling prices, which purportedly caused industry revenue to fall 7% while unit shipments went up 4%. Seagate, meanwhile, complained of "less than normal seasonal increase in demand for hard disk drives" and tight margins caused by "intense price competition." There might be more of that in store. PC Magazine says WD COO Timothy Leyden "implied that hard-drive prices should continue to decline in the near term."

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