The flash memory drive makers could be about to claim another market victory - 1.8-inch microdrives.

Japan's Nikkei business daily reports that Hitachi GST, rumoured to be up for sale, plans to stop selling 1.8-inch disk drives by the summer. It has already exited the 1-inch drive business. The reasons must include flash memory competition.

Fujitsu has also given up plans to enter the market after working on product development with US-based Cornice. Toshiba is the leader in the 1.8-inch HDD business and Seagate also makes the products. The reported Hitachi GST and Fujitsu exits from this product area could cause them to follow suit.

Hitachi GST is said to be concentrating on 2.5-inch and 3.5-inch hard drives where market growth is still forecast.