Solid state drives just had a banner year. According to analytics firm IHS, 39 million units of the flash-based storage alternative to traditional spinning hard drives found their way into Ultrabooks, ultraportable laptops, and other hardware in 2012. That’s a worldwide total, and the figure’s up 129% compared to 2011’s SSD shipments of 17 million units.
According the firm, solid state drives are booming for several reasons. There’s been a price drop in the selling price for NAND flash memory, more engagement from PC manufacturers and increased adoption from enterprise markets.
It also doesn’t hurt that the storage options are becoming more prevalent in thin and light laptops, especially those from Intel’s Ultrabook initiative which, by definition, must offer solid-state drives as internal storage.
IHS predicts a lot of SSDs in our future as well. Projected sales for 2013 climb to 83 million units, or $10.7 billion, up 53% from 2012. Double-digit expansion is expected for the next three years, leading to $20.7 billion in revenue by 2016.