End effect: The time to start shopping for a new SSD hasn’t come yet, but it’s coming. Significant moves in the NAND flash market will finally end this year’s solid-state memory price decline, so customers waiting to save money should plan to take the plunge closer to the holidays.
Samsung will cut NAND flash production in half starting in September, a drastic response to oversupply and falling demand that have pushed down storage drive prices throughout 2023. The decision is first and foremost works Processes under 128 layers. TrendForce expects other manufacturers to follow Samsung’s lead, leading to a slight price increase in the fourth quarter.
Market trends have caused SSD prices to fall by over 30 percent since the beginning of the year. With no clear indication of how long the downward trend would last, many customers likely entered 2023 at odds with retailers and manufacturers.
The price per gigabyte for many 2TB and 1TB models has fallen to under eight cents, and for some products as low as four cents. Some 2TB PCIe 4.0 NVMe SSDs are available for around $100, while 1TB models hover around the $50 mark. In the next few weeks, these prices could fall, even if only slightly.
The situation has made 2023 an ideal time to upgrade storage for a PC or PlayStation 5, especially with blockbuster games like Starfield, Call of Duty and Baldur’s Gate 3 taking up over 100GB of storage space. Additionally, the emergence of Microsoft’s DirectStroage API in titles like Forza Motorsport and (later) Diablo IV will soon make NVMe drives even more important.
Previous TrendForce reports showed NAND flash prices declining 10 to 15 percent in each of the first two quarters of this year, while declines began to level off at 5 to 10 percent in the third quarter. The group says production cuts could cause prices to remain flat or rise by up to 5 percent in the fourth quarter.
It is still too early to predict price changes until 2024, but sustained actions from Samsung and other manufacturers, as well as a recovery in enterprise SSD sales, could lead to an increase. If you’re looking for a new SSD, you might want to take action before prices go up again.