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Hitachi to Anchor 2.5-inch Hard Drive Leadership with Quarter-Terabyte Product

Discussion in 'News' started by D_o_S, Nov 2, 2006.

  1. D_o_S

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    SAN JOSE, Calif. – Nov. 1, 2006 – Following a 36-percent quarter-over-quarter growth in unit shipment, Hitachi Global Storage Technologies ( Hitachi ) is today unfolding a 2007 product strategy intended to secure the company's position as segment and technology leader for 2.5-inch hard drives. With two new products offering capacities in excess of 200 gigabytes (GB) of storage and a sustained track record of technology leadership in this product segment, Hitachi is positioned to continue its undefeated 2.5-inch leadership record into 2007 and beyond.

    The Hitachi Travelstar product line has maintained its position as the world's most popular 2.5-inch hard drive for nearly 15 years. Over the next several years, the opportunity in the 2.5-inch segment is expected to grow significantly, and Hitachi is preparing to capture that growth. By 2010, industry analyst firm IDC predicts 2.5-inch hard drive annual shipments will double to 224 million units from 118 million in 2006. At that time, Hitachi believes the highest-capacity 2.5-inch product may be in the 750-GB range.

    In the near term, the anchor element of the Hitachi 2007 2.5-inch plan is a new product that is expected to offer leadership performance and storage capacity in a 200-GB, 7200 RPM package, slated for availability in the first half of 2007. This combination of high capacity and high performance underscores Hitachi's established position as manufacturer of the most powerful 2.5-inch hard drive.

    The second Travelstar product, a 5400 RPM hard drive, will offer storage capacity in the quarter-terabyte range and is expected in the second half of 2007. The new products will also provide hard-drive-level data encryption as a new feature for added security. In addition, Hitachi is offering a flash memory/hard drive hybrid option for enhanced battery life, greater performance and increased reliability.

    Hitachi's new 2.5-inch hard drives are expected to continue the industry-leading performance characteristics of their predecessors. Both Travelstar drives will use perpendicular magnetic recording (PMR) technology, building upon the highly successful volume ramp of Hitachi's debut PMR hard drive, the Travelstar 5K160.

    "The Travelstar products we have planned for 2007 give insight to what Hitachi believes are important to end-users in a mobile storage product: ample capacity for video and other rich content, superior performance and reliability, and greater confidence in the safety of their data as users are increasingly on the move," said Shinjiro Iwata, chief marketing officer, Hitachi Global Storage Technologies. "The 2.5-inch hard drive segment represents Hitachi's flagship product line, and we're working to ensure that Hitachi continues to set the pace of technology advancement for this category."

    2.5-inch Segment Acceleration

    Hitachi's new product developments will put the company in position to take advantage of IDC's projected 22-percent compounded annual growth rate (CAGR) of the 2.5-inch segment from 2005 to 2010.

    "A growing number of mobile PC users are placing a high value on storage capacity, performance, reliability and security while on the go," according to John Rydning, IDC's Research Manager for hard disk drives. "There is a tremendous opportunity for HDD OEMs such as Hitachi to establish market leadership by delivering high capacity mobile 2.5-inch disk drives equipped with value-added features to meet these challenging requirements.“

    IDC's projection of the 2.5-inch hard drive growth shows the greatest opportunity to be in the portable PC category, followed by gaming consoles, external storage and automotive applications. Hitachi participates in all of those segments and leads segment share in the portable PC category.

    Hybrid: A Higher-Value Hard Drive

    The hard drive industry has used low-capacity flash memory for many years to store the firmware that controls the entire hard disk drive. With the decreasing cost of flash, Hitachi believes there is greater opportunity to increase the value of hard drives by storing some system functions to flash memory rather than on the disk. The potential benefit of a hybrid storage solution – especially for mobile devices – ranges from longer battery life, faster boot-up time and recovery from hibernation, to greater reliability and higher performance.

    Combined with low-cost, high-capacity storage, the hybrid solution presents a significantly higher-value hard drive, especially in mobile product segments. New 2.5-inch products shipped in 2007 will offer hybrid as an option on the same base platform.

    Hard Drive Bulk Data Encryption

    Today, users are able to protect their hard drive with password security which prevents access to the drive but does not encrypt the data itself. Traditionally, for those who wished to secure their drives, the only viable solution was to use a software-based tool, which could slow down the system performance.

    With the rise in notebook theft and the relative ease in which software-based password security can be compromised, Hitachi is responding with a hard-drive-level encryption solution that is virtually impenetrable. In addition, Hitachi's introduction of full data encryption at the hardware level, allows data security to be carried out with little to no impact to system speed. Hitachi's version of hard-drive-level data encryption scrambles data using a password-generated key as it is being written to the disk and then descrambled with the key as it is retrieved.

    In hybrid hard drives, Hitachi's security technology encrypts data in both the flash memory and hard drive for the highest level of security. Hitachi employs the Advanced Encryption Standard (AES) algorithm, the industry standard for data encryption technology.

    Hitachi's data encryption technology will be offered as a new feature on all new 2.5-inch hard drives shipped in 2007 and beyond. Notebook manufacturers and other customers will have the choice of whether to implement this feature on their systems.

    Source: Hitachi
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 2, 2006

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