‘India is a very important market for Western Digital’

Hemani Sheth Mumbai | Updated on January 12, 2021 Published on January 12, 2021

Jaganathan Chelliah, Director, Marketing for India region at Western Digital

SanDisk Ultra Dual Drive Luxe USB Type-C Penddrive   -  via Western Digital shop

India is an important market for the global data storage solutions provider Western Digital Corporation, according to Jaganathan Chelliah, Director, Marketing for India region at WDC.

According to Chelliah, the market has great potential owing to the growth in data creation and data consumption.

“India is a very important market for Western Digital. India is a market that is clearly growing exponentially in terms of data creation and data consumption. So, we see a strong correlation between the digital drive that's happening both on the personal side and on the business side. And the amount of data that is getting created out there,” the WD executive said.

“We see a great opportunity for both, our personal storage solution product portfolio, and the commercial storage solution product portfolio,” he said.

Personal storage

Within the consumer segment, WDC has products across SanDisk and WD brands for personal storage. Moving forward, the company will increase its focus on the portable SSD category and the mobile USB category.

“We have an array of solutions, that would help the consumer manage their data effectively. We see two important product categories that the consumers today are actively looking at. One is the Portable SSD category where we have SanDisk. The other category where there is a strong interest among consumers is on the mobile USB, we call that as a pen drive for mobile, our Sandisk dual USB drive,” said Chelliah.

“Our opportunities are primarily based on emerging consumer needs. So, that's why we are looking at this market segment,” he said.

According to a report by CyberMedia Research (CMR), the India Consumer Storage market which includes Micro SD, Pen Drive, and SD card witnessed a 433 per cent growth in shipments Quarter over Quarter (QoQ) in Q3 2020. SanDisk remained the market leader with 74 per cent share with a 50 per cent market share in the Micro SD category, 87 per cent share in the SD Card market and a 94 per cent market share in the Pen Drive segment.

Internal solid-state drives (SSDs) will also play an important role for WD’s growth moving forward.

“The other category where we have a good opportunity, a very strong market need and the right set of products to help the consumers get the right experience from their PCs (personal computers) is the internal SSD market,” said Chelliah.

“On the commercial side Solid State Drives (SSD)s, internal SSDs, in particular, play a very important role in enhancing the productivity of professionals across across all verticals,” he said.

“That's another important growth opportunity we're seeing because India has a very large installed base of laptops and desktops with hard disk drives. Our entire WD internal SSD portfolio on WD Blue and WD Green are doing really well and has a high acceptance in the marketplace,” he added.

The India Consumer Internal SSD market (SATA & PCIe) shipments witnessed a 197 per cent QoQ growth in Q3 2020 as per CMR’s India Hard Drive Market Review for Q3 CY2020.

WDC was the top contributor in the overall India Consumer Internal SSD market in Q3 2020 with a 39 per cent market share, as per the report.

Role of gaming

The increased popularity of gaming in India is also driving the demand for storage and SSDs in particular.

“The one leg technology component, within a gaming PC, that can make a significant improvement for the game, in terms of the overall experience is the storage. It determines the type of experience the game will have,” as per Chelliah.

“The one place where you have a challenge today in terms of data transfer is on the storage and where most of the gamers are using hard disk drives in India. Now, this is where the importance of solid-state drives comes into play. It increases the speed of data transfer between the components of a computer by an order of magnitude. So that helps known games to load faster commands to be executed faster or lesser frame losses,” he explained.

“There is a technology limitation when you use hard disk drives. So, Western Digital clearly identified this as a need,” he added.

Western Digital has introduced a series of products under its WD_BLACK portfolio of storage solutions for gamers. These include the WD_BLACK SN850 NVMe SSD, Western Digital's first NVMe solid-state drive (SSD), and the WD_BLACK AN1500 NVMe SSD Add-in-Card. Additionally, Western Digital will also be introducing three new Call of Duty: Black Ops Cold War-themed SSDs in early January 2021.

Commercial storage

The WD executive also talked about the increased demand for storage in the commercial storage portfolio as organisations embrace the digital transformation accelerated by the Covid-19 pandemic.

“On the enterprise side, organisations are actively embracing digital transformation and they are changing their business processes, optimising their supply chains, optimising their sales and marketing engines to ensure that they use digital technologies to manage the current disruption that has happened,” he said.

“The digital initiatives that different enterprises and organisations are putting in place to solve complex challenges are really driving the need to have the right kind of storage technologies to manage the data that is getting created,” he said.

“This is another place where we can play an important role to help our customers in the enterprise segment using our industry-leading high capacity, ultra-star hard disk drives, and high-performance enterprise-class SSDs,” he added.

“We are focusing on all aspects of the growth and data in both the consumer and commercial side with specific use cases that are emerging,” he further said.

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Published on January 12, 2021
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