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|There are many factors going for solid-state drives moving forward: Apple's increasing use of SSDs in the Mac; Intel's push to unify specs for SSDs for Ultrabooks; and more importantly, SSD manufacturers' aggressive moves to bring down the prices of their offerings. Yes, the conventional spinning hard disk drives still hold the price advantage if you wish to store tons of data cheaply, but the point is, you no longer need to break the bank to get a decent SSD to enjoy fast bootup and speedy app launches. For this year, the Readers' Choice award for Best SSD Brand goes to SanDisk. In fact, the American data storage solutions company narrowly beats Intel to the trophy. By the way, if you're looking to get a top-end SSD, remember to check out our recent high-end SSD shootout.|
|Western Digital and Seagate are the two largest hard disk drive makers in the world, so it's no surprise that they are vying for the Best External HDD Brand award. For the third year running, the award goes to Western Digital. And again unsurprisingly, the combination of Western Digital and Seagate accounted for a giant chunk of the votes - 63% to be exact. For creative professionals, check out the Thunderbolt-equipped My Book Thunderbolt Duo that offers up to 8TB of storage. The My Book Studio that offers up to 4TB is also recently updated with SuperSpeed USB 3.0 connectivity.|
|Flash memory storage leader SanDisk has comfortably walked home again with the Best Removable Flash Storage Brand award. Its share of votes is consistent with last year's: 58% vs. 57%. While the company's latest moves revolved more around EFDs (embedded flash drives) and SSDs, based on its track record, it's safe to expect news of faster memory cards and new USB flash drives before the year is up.|
|The network-attached storage (NAS) category has always been hotly contested, and it's no different this year. After winning the award for the past two years, D-Link is looking for a three-peat this year. Alas, this is not to be, as its share of votes dropped from 25% to 18%. The new winner is Seagate, which amassed 19% of the votes. Buffalo and Western Digital aren't that far behind with 17% and 16% respectively. Can D-Link regain the title next year? Stay tuned to 2014 for the answer!|
|The LCD monitor category is another category that involves a lot of players. Despite the number, the winner has managed to garner almost half of the votes. Yes, Samsung is once again the winner of this category. But to be frank, we aren't that surprised. Besides making monitors with increasingly thin designs, Samsung's monitor lineup is also one of the most comprehensive in the industry - from energy efficient monitors and 3D monitors, to professionally-calibrated monitors and monitors with a wireless hub.|
|Sim Lim Square has always been the go-to place for DIY enthusiasts building their own systems, as this is the mall that gathers numerous PC components retailers under the same roof. For the fourth straight year, our readers had voted Fuwell as their favorite PC components retailer. PC Themes comes in second (14%), and Best Buy (not to be confused with the one in the U.S.) is third (13%). However, Fuwell's share of the pie has reduced from 28% from the previous year to just 20% this year.|