Western Digital Expands Mid-Range Enterprise Hard Drive Offerings For On-Premises Big Data Environments

SAN JOSE, CA – Jan. 18, 2018 – Known for enabling new levels of enterprise total cost of ownership (TCO) with HelioSeal® helium hard drive technology and industry leading capacity drives, Western Digital Corporation (NASDAQ: WDC) is expanding its portfolio for enterprise customers with a new, mid-range series of 4 terabyte (TB), 6TB and 8TB air-based hard drives. The new products enable corporate data centers having data set sizes smaller than found in hyperscale environments to harness the power of data across a broad spectrum of Big Data applications such as analytics and distributed file systems.

Western Digital leads the high-capacity enterprise hard drive market for hyperscale and cloud environments with its 10TB, 12TB and 14TB drives, where the company's HelioSeal helium-sealing technology is required for the highest capacities and densities to deliver the lowest (or best) TCO. However, many applications have small data sets or benefit from optimal performance from implementation of a cluster of lower capacity, air-based hard drives. Many traditional data center systems still rely on moderate capacity points for RAID-based block-and-file systems.

"The power of Big Data is driving the need for higher capacities across a broad spectrum of applications," said Brendan Collins, vice president of marketing, Devices Business Unit, Western Digital. "Today, mid-range applications are preparing to move from 1TB and 2TB configurations to higher capacities. Our new enterprise solutions blend the technology and TCO leadership of Western Digital's capacity enterprise product line with a high-density, air-based hard drive design, allowing OEMs to offer data centers a solution to keep Big Data on-premises, rather than transition entirely to the cloud."

Distributed file systems such as Apache Hadoop® often have workloads that require higher access density in order to maintain performance when running Big Data analytics jobs. The "sweet spot" capacities for these applications are 4TB, 6TB and 8TB. Western Digital's new enterprise solutions are designed for this space, while providing enterprise-level performance and specifications for storage OEM partners to serve end customers with a range of capacity and price points while maintaining the enterprise integrity demanded by today's data center architects.

Available immediately for qualification, the new Ultrastar® 7K6, supporting 4TB and 6TB capacity points, utilizes a new 4-disk, enterprise class, air-based design. The new products provide up to 12 percent faster performance than the prior generation Ultrastar 7K6000 and is designed for traditional storage and server applications as well as distributed and scalable computing, including block-and-file storage architecture. Later this quarter, the company will deliver an Ultrastar 7K8 8TB solution, which is based on an air-based design and is the ninth generation of the company's 5-disk platform. Further information regarding the Ultrastar 7K6 and 7K8 is available on the website.

The 4TB, 6TB and 8TB offerings will be ready for volume ramp during the second calendar quarter of 2018. Western Digital's media cache and flash-based non-volatile cache (NVC) are implemented to improve write performance. These new enterprise drives will be available in either SAS or SATA interfaces and provide an enterprise-class MTBF rating of 2M hours. 

About Western Digital
Western Digital creates environments for data to thrive. The company is driving the innovation needed to help customers capture, preserve, access and transform an ever-increasing diversity of data. Everywhere data lives, from advanced data centers to mobile sensors to personal devices, our industry-leading solutions deliver the possibilities of data. Western Digital® data-centric solutions are marketed under the G-Technology™, HGST, SanDisk®, Tegile™, Upthere™, and WD® brands.

Forward-looking Statement
This news release includes forward-looking statements, including the expected availability and performance of the Ultrastar 7K6 and 7K8 and their features and benefits to customers. There are a number of risks and uncertainties that may cause these forward-looking statements to be inaccurate including, among others: the 7K6 and 7K8 may not be available when we expect; volatility in global economic conditions; business conditions and growth in the storage ecosystem; impact of competitive products and pricing; market acceptance and cost of commodity materials and specialized product components; actions by competitors; unexpected advances in competing technologies; our development and introduction of products based on new technologies and expansion into new data storage markets; risks associated with acquisitions, mergers and joint ventures; difficulties or delays in manufacturing; and other risks and uncertainties listed the company's filings with the Securities and Exchange commission (the "SEC"), including our most recently filed periodic report to which your attention is directed. We do not intend to update the information contained in this release.

Western Digital, the Western Digital logo, G-Technology, SanDisk, Tegile, Upthere, WD, Helioseal and Ultrastar are registered trademark or trademarks of Western Digital Corporation or its affiliates in the US and/or other countries. Apache Hadoop is either a registered trademark or trademark of the Apache Software Foundation in the United States and/or other countries. All other marks are the property of their respective owners.

As used for storage capacity, one gigabyte (GB) = one billion bytes and one terabyte (TB) = one trillion bytes. Total accessible capacity varies depending on operating environment. Product specifications subject to change without notice. Not all products are available in all regions of the world.

© 2018 Western Digital Corporation or its affiliates. All rights reserved

Contact Info: 

Heather Skinner
Western Digital Corporation
Public Relations
+1 949.672.7920

Bob Blair
Western Digital Corporation
Investor Relations
+1 949.672.7834