WESTERN DIGITAL: Calif. Judge Approves Disk Storage Suit Deal

Class Action Reporter
Nov 19, 2007

U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California Judge Bernard Zimmerman approved on June 15 a settlement with Western Digital Corp. over claims the company's representations of hard drive storage capacities were misleading. The company continues to wrongdoing or liability.

Under the agreement, class members who registered for the settlement at http://www.wdc.com/settlement no later than July 15, 2006 will receive free backup and recovery software with anestimated retail value of $30. An estimated one millionpurchasers are eligible for the software.

The suit claimed that Western Digital overstated its hard disk drives' storage capacities by approximately 7%. For example, it alleged that Western Digital 80GB hard disk drives had an actual capacity of only 74.4GB.

Western Digital and other hard drive makers use the decimal definition of GB or gigabyte, where 1 GB equals 1 billion bytes. Computer operating systems like Windows and Apple define GB using a binary definition, where 1 GB equals 1,073,741,824 bytes. The suit claimed that because of the disparity, consumers could not store as much data as expected. The settlement requires Western Digital to disclose its definition of GB on future packaging.

The law firm Gutride Safier LLP, which represented the purchasers, was pleased with the result. "This settlement ends a misleading practice and compensates anyone who was harmed," said attorney Adam Gutride. "Each purchaser is entitled to software with an estimated retail value of $30."

The suit is "Safier v. Western Digital Corporation, Case No. 3:05-cv-03353-BZ," filed in the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California under Judge Bernard Zimmerman.

Representing the defendants are Scott D. Baskin and Lisa M. Sharrock both of Irell & Manella LLP, 840 Newport Center Drive, Suite 400, Newport Beach, CA 92660-6324, Phone: 949-760-0991, Fax: 949-760-5200, E-mail: sbaskin@irell.com and lsharrock@irell.com

Representing the plaintiffs are Adam Gutride and Seth A. Safier both of Gutride Safier LLP, 835 Douglass Street, San Francisco, CA 94114, Phone: 415/271-6469, Fax: 928/438-1285, E-mail: gutridelaw@earthlink.net and seth@safier.org

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