1 in 3 SSD failure rate 'unfounded'

March 20, 2008 | 09:13

Tags: #failure #mtbf #reliability #solid-state #ssd

Companies: #dell

Reports that solid-state disks might not be as reliable as the marketing materials claim have been circulating after Avian Securities published a report claiming a failure rate of between ten and twenty percent for the new tech, and overall return rates of SSD-equipped laptops of thirty percent. In an effort to set the record straight, box shifter Dell has taken the decision to publish its own returns figures for laptops featuring SSDs and something doesn't quite add up.

Dell – whom it must be said has something of a vested interest in selling the currently high-margin SSD devices – has claimed the twenty percent failure rate reported by various news agencies based on the Avian report is “unfounded and wholly inaccurate.” The company goes on to claim that data gathered from Dell centres world-wide shows that SSD reliability can be ranked equal to or even greater than that of traditional mechanical hard drives.

In a post to the Direct2Dell blog the company has stated that the return rate figures reported by Avian Securities “don't even vaguely resemble what's happening in our business” and that the analysis company “did not contact us while doing their research.

For its part, Avian Securities isn't fighting this one. Managing partner Avi Cohen has suggested that the discrepancy was brought about by his company using “early data on returns” and not up-to-date figures on total sales, and has said that his company will not be challenging Dell's rebuttal.

So, if you've been reading elsewhere that the sky is falling in on owners and users of solid-state storage devices you may want to think twice about putting on your hard-hat. According to Dell, at least, “it's just not true.

Anybody own a Dell unit with factory-fitted SSD want to comment on the company's take on customer satisfaction and return rates? Has anybody actually had an SSD fail on them unexpectedly? Share your comments over in the forums.
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