Western Digital adds “Red Plus” branding for non-SMR hard drives

kirbyrj

Fully [H]
Joined
Feb 1, 2005
Messages
26,170
I'm more inclined to agree with the class action lawsuit over SMR rather than more SKUs (and higher prices). If anything they should call the SMR Reds, "Red Minus." Rather than rebrand what SHOULD be the standard red, "Red Plus."
 

HockeyJon

[H]ard|Gawd
Joined
Dec 14, 2014
Messages
1,228
I wasn’t fine with HD companies hiding SMR, but I’m fine with this. Some customers won’t care, and if they’re offering an SMR drive for a lower cost than a non-SMR drive in an OBVIOUSLY differentiated SKU, I have no issue. The core of the problem isn’t the existence of SMR, it’s that HD companies secretly used SMR technology in the same SKU that people had used for years that had PMR technology without making any differentiation. It was logical for any consumer to assume that a 1TB WD Red HD performs the same as the one they were already using. It didn’t, it wasn’t made obvious to the consumer, and there was no differentiation on price despite the difference in performance.

If you’re using that hard drive for archiving files that you don’t need to access on a regular basis or access quickly, SMR drives are fine. If they want to offer that option for customers who want to archive family pictures or whatever with a relatively cheap solution, that’s fine, as long as they know what they’re buying.
 

Ebernanut

[H]ard|Gawd
Joined
Dec 15, 2010
Messages
1,197
It's a little sleazy to to rebrand the normal drives as improved versions but at least they're being transparent now. WD Reds have been my go to storage drives for a few years but I'll be looking into other drives the next time I need to add some storage.

Of course the real fuckup here is that they didn't just originally call the smr versions archival grade and if sticking to the Red branding then warn that it isn't intended for NAS. Calling it archival grade would make it sound more durable to the ignorant while giving plenty of warning to others and actually be fairly honest about the proper use of the drives.
 

nilepez

[H]F Junkie
Joined
Jan 21, 2005
Messages
11,673
They need to explicitly state on the box and drive anytime they sell something with SMR. And unlike otehrs, I think renaming nas drives Red plus is still shit. Call the SMR drives pink drives or orange or whatever, but Red was created to differentiate NAS drives from non-nas drives. To Turn Red into, essentially, green drives is crap and I suspect many may still be mislead by this new naming. I know if i hadn't read about it here, I wouldn't have known Red was now not Red. Fortunately, it appears this doesn't affect larger drives, but it's still bad.
 

SmokeRngs

[H]ard|DCer of the Month - April 2008
Joined
Aug 9, 2001
Messages
16,167
They need to explicitly state on the box and drive anytime they sell something with SMR. And unlike otehrs, I think renaming nas drives Red plus is still shit. Call the SMR drives pink drives or orange or whatever, but Red was created to differentiate NAS drives from non-nas drives. To Turn Red into, essentially, green drives is crap and I suspect many may still be mislead by this new naming. I know if i hadn't read about it here, I wouldn't have known Red was now not Red. Fortunately, it appears this doesn't affect larger drives, but it's still bad.
You've nailed my thoughts on the matter perfectly. SMR drives never should have been labeled as Red drives. They don't work properly in the niche the Red drives were marketed for and should be booted out of that labeling to their own labeling. That should mean that when you RMA the SMR Red drives you would not get an SMR Red drive back.
 

ThatITGuy

Limp Gawd
Joined
May 5, 2017
Messages
403
I wasn’t fine with HD companies hiding SMR, but I’m fine with this. Some customers won’t care, and if they’re offering an SMR drive for a lower cost than a non-SMR drive in an OBVIOUSLY differentiated SKU, I have no issue. The core of the problem isn’t the existence of SMR, it’s that HD companies secretly used SMR technology in the same SKU that people had used for years that had PMR technology without making any differentiation. It was logical for any consumer to assume that a 1TB WD Red HD performs the same as the one they were already using. It didn’t, it wasn’t made obvious to the consumer, and there was no differentiation on price despite the difference in performance.

If you’re using that hard drive for archiving files that you don’t need to access on a regular basis or access quickly, SMR drives are fine. If they want to offer that option for customers who want to archive family pictures or whatever with a relatively cheap solution, that’s fine, as long as they know what they’re buying.
Disagree with being fine with this new SKU.
They built up a reputation for their Red line being the go-to for NAS. With that came a certain level of expectation on performance.
Now they introduced a lower performance product using that same branding, and want to charge an additional premium to sell us the same drive we were buying before, by calling it "Pro". For those who actually pay attention this is a slap in the face, but it also allows them to sucker those who do not keep up on things into buying the lower performance drive because of outdated assumptions.
 
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