China-based cryptomining hardware makers are "panic buying" all the available large-capacity SSDs from the spot market, according to industry sources.
China's cryptomining hardware makers have already procured all the available 7.68TB SSDs and moved to stock 3.84TB drives, which are "almost sold out" in the spot market, the sources indicated.
SSDs with 2TB of storage would be their next target of their buying, said the sources, which attributed this wave of panic buying to Chia - a new cryptocurrency that will soon start trading.
Cryptomining demand for large-capacity SSDs started ramping up earlier in April, the sources indicated. Besides, the ongoing shortage of SSD controllers is also sending downstream device makers and distributors replenishing inventory, the sources said.
The sources continued that it remains to be seen whether cryptomining demand for large-capacity SSDs will last. Upstream chipmakers continue to give supply priority to OEMs, leaving only 10-12% of their available chips for the spot market, the sources said.
Module houses also intend to maintain their normal supplies to cryptominers while continuing to scale up their inventory levels, the sources noted. Nevertheless, spot market prices will be driven by a surge in demand from China's cryptomining hardware makers in the short term, according to the sources.
In the contract market, NAND flash prices started to rise in the second quarter due mainly to controller and other related component supply constraints, the sources said. The price trend in the second half of this year could be bullish driven by the overall end-market demand growth.