Whatever Happened to “Hero” SSDs?

Bodybuilder with the insides of an SSD superimposedIt seems not so long ago that there were frequent press releases, and showings at trade shows, of “Hero” SSDs.  These demonstration models (which weren’t always released as products) always had some unique and impressive attribute.  They may have had a higher capacity than any SSD known to humankind, or perhaps they had phenomenal endurance.  Some broke the IOPS barrier.

The SSD Guy doesn’t remember anyone introducing an SSD that claimed to be the cheapest!  I guess that was one realm that SSD makers didn’t want to enter.

It seems that it’s been quite some time since someone introduced an SSD that went massively above and beyond the specifications typical of most products.  Why might that be?

I don’t have a really good answer to that, but I think it has a lot to do with the fact that the SSD market has matured.  Users now understand their needs, which they didn’t only a few years ago.  They don’t buy a 10 DWPD SSD when all they need is 0.3 DWPD.  Software has been tuned to avoid performing needless tasks that either wore out the SSD or hampered its performance.

Users today don’t look for 100K IOPS when 10K will do.  Enterprise SSD users got a lot smarter about how much SSD and how much HDD was the correct balance for their systems.

Meanwhile, SSD manufacturers moved from a point where they were advocating the highest-performance SSD for every possible application (and perhaps even some that could never expect to use that much performance) to a point where they now listen closely to their customers, working to give them the exact price/performance balance that they need, without pushing for them to pay for performance that’s several times more than necessary.

Whatever the reason, the market has calmed down a whole lot.  In a way, that’s refreshing.

Let me know what you think by posting a comment.

And please keep Objective Analysis in mind, because we ask questions that are a little out of the ordinary, and the answers to these questions often lead our clients to market success.

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