Storage vendor Western Digital has extended and standardised its hard drive warranty periods for five years for its enterprise drives and three years for its desktop and notebook drives.
Western Digital had previously offered five, three and one year warranties, the vendor said in a release.
Jim Murphy, vice president for Asia sales at Western Digital, said the vendor wished to align its warranties with its customers' system warranty periods.
"Western Digital knows from talking with our wide range of customers that their buying criteria vary significantly based on geography and application needs," he said.
Murphy said warranty was an important product and service attribute for customers choosing a brand of hard drive. Western Digital's extension and standardisation of its warranty periods helped it offer what it considered to be the best overall hard drive value, he said.
The increased warranty periods -- three years for desktop and notebook hard drives and five years for enterprise drives -- might help Western Digital resellers boost sales, he said.
"Western Digital's new warranty policy aligns with many systems integrators' premium systems warranties," Murphy said.
He said the new warranty plan was effective 18 July. Many resellers still had a few weeks of inventory at that time, so the manufacture date was reversed to 1 June, Murphy said.
The new warranty system compared well with what competitors offered, he said.
Further changes to Western Digital warranties or other support over the next year or two were always possible, he added.
"Western Digital is continually monitoring and evaluating changing customer needs in a multitude of market segments," Murphy said.
Asked why Western Digital hadn't matched Seagate’s across-the-board five-year warranty period, the vendor sidestepped the question, instead choosing to point out that warranties weren't the most important thing.
Murphy said quality and reliability were always the most important investment Western Digital could make in its drive designs.
"Customers rely on Western Digital drives because they value the data placed on the drives. This is more important than warranty for most customers," Murphy pointed out.
The new standardised warranty policy had already taken effect via Western Digital's Australian authorised distributors Achieva Technology, Esys, Ingram Micro, Synnex and Westan, according to a company statement.