While the recession hampered IT spending last year, 2009 was a good year for solid state drive (SSD) vendors, with SSD shipments increasing 14 percent year for year.

Total shipments surpassed 11 million units, an increase of 14 percent year over year, according to market research IDC.

SSD's are touted as next generation of storage technology, aimed at working alongside or even replacing current hard-disk technology.

The drives have no moving parts and are able to retrieve data many times faster than traditional drives, though capacity is still waning.

IDC expects SSD adoption will continue to experience growth in 2010, with shipments expected to achieve a compound annual growth rate of 54 percent over the 2008-2013 forecast period.

Despite lingering uncertainties around the economy, IDC remains positive on the outlook for SSDs and believes the trajectories for shipment and revenue growth are a source of optimism moving forward, said Jeff Janukowicz, research manager, Hard Disk Drive Components and Solid State Drives at IDC.

Pricing remains a key metric for SSD adoption in all market segments.

The slowdown in IT spending over the past 18 months has led to production cutbacks in NAND semiconductors, subsequently slowing overall SSD price reductions.

However, the long term decline in the cost of NAND memory will translate into lower price points for SSDs. These lower price points, coupled with increased SSD capacities, will make them a compelling alternative to hard disk drives .

The largest market opportunity for SSDs will be in PCs, where there are two avenues to adoption, according to IDC.

In the enterprise, SSDs complement HDDs for certain applications.

The desire for increased performance, better utilization, faster access times, and lower power consumption is providing an increasing opportunity for SSD-based solutions in the datacenter where there is a premium on high performance.

SSD adoption will continue to experience tangible growth given the nascent stage for SSD adoption coupled with many of the benefits inherent in SSDs, added Janukowicz.

We expect SSD vendors to achieve capacity and price points that make SSDs an attractive solution in the PC and enterprise markets where the value proposition of SSDs is compelling.