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Todd Swank, vice president of marketing at Nor-Tech, a Burnsville, Minn.-based system builder, said his company is seeing growing demand for hard drives, but more from a push to upgrade PCs from Windows XP to Windows 7 rather than an upgrade to Windows 8.
"I can't say a lot of customers plan to upgrade to Windows 8," Swank said. "Enterprises are slow to adopt new operating systems. But, a lot of them have recently upgraded from Windows XP to Windows 7. Everybody skipped Vista."
As a result, 2012 sales of client PCs so far grew significantly compared to sales in 2011, Swank said. However, he tempered the impact on hard drives from that growth by noting that there are fewer competitors than in the past as several system builders dropped out of the market.
Even so, Swank said, the storage business can only grow, making demand for hard drives rise over time.
"The demand for storage is growing," he said. "People are looking for bigger servers, bigger hard drives, bigger storage, bigger data centers. They need backups, and backups of backups. It's a great time for storage."