Worldwide Personal & Entry-Level Storage Market Continued to Shrink in the Third Quarter of 2015, According to IDC

16 Nov 2015

FRAMINGHAM, Mass., November 16, 2015 ‐ Worldwide personal and entry-level storage (PELS) shipments declined -13.4% year over year to 16.7 million units in the third quarter of 2015 (3Q15), but were up 10.3% compared to the previous quarter, according to the International Data Corporation (IDC ) Worldwide Personal and Entry- Level Storage Tracker . Shipment values declined along with unit shipments, down -19.8% from a year ago to $1.3 billion.

"The personal and entry-level storage market was stagnant in 2014 and started to show signs of decline in 2015" said Jingwen Li , Senior Research Analyst, Storage Systems . "The adoption of cloud storage has been gaining traction in the consumer space with its easy data access and mobile device integration. One of the negative impacts of cloud storage deployment leads to shrinking demand within the PELS market."

Market Highlights

  • Personal storage remained the dominant component of the PELS market and accounted for over 98% of market shipments. This quarter marked the fourth consecutive quarter of declining shipments for personal storage, which were down -13.5% year over year. Entry-level storage, which represents the PELS market segment with higher margins, started to show shipment declines as well, with shipments down -4.5% during the quarter.
  • For personal storage, the majority of shipments were products with 1TB and 2TB capacity points, which combined accounted for nearly 75% of units shipped. On the entry-level side, 4TB and 8-20TB devices accounted for the majority of shipments, as SMBs demand larger capacity to meet their storage needs.
  • Regarding interface, USB remained the most popular choice in the market. Dual interface products continued to grow at a double-digit rate (51.8% year over year). Ethernet offerings experienced the largest decline in the recent four quarters (-17.6% year over year), which was primarily due to the decline in the entry-level space.

Worldwide Personal and Entry-Level Storage Shipment, Market Share, and Year-Over-Year Growth, Third Quarter 2015 (shipment in thousands)

Vendor 3Q15 Shipments 3Q15 Market Share 3Q14 Shipments 3Q14 Market Share 3Q15/3Q14 Growth
Western Digital* 5,207 31.20% 6,376 33.10% -18.30%
Seagate** 4,325 25.90% 4,797 24.90% -9.80%
Toshiba 3,030 18.20% 3,448 17.90% -12.10%
Buffalo 465 2.80% 484 2.50% -4.00%
Others 3,653 21.90% 4,154 21.60% -12.10%
Total 16,680 100.00% 19,260 100.00% -13.40%

Source: IDC Worldwide Quarterly Personal and Entry Level Storage Tracker, November 2015

Notes:* Western Digital does not include HGST

** Seagate does not include LaCie and Samsung



  • The PELS market includes storage products and solutions with a single bay through twelve bay configurations that are manufactured and marketed for individuals, small offices/home offices, and small businesses.
  • IDC defines Personal Storage as having 1-2 bays and Entry-Level Storage as having 3-12 bays.
  • IDC defines an HDD vendor as a vendor who manufactures its own hard disk drive, in addition to branded external storage.
  • IDC defines a Mainstream non-HDD vendor as a major PELS vendor that does not manufacture its own hard disk drives.
  • Data for the PELS market is reported for calendar periods.
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