Seagate Positions Slim, 500GB HDD for Tablet Market
September 10, 2013 4:20 AM
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Seagate claims that its 500GB will offer the performance of a 16GB SSD
When it comes to devices like consumer tablets, we've all just grown accustomed to the use of fast and reliable onboard NAND flash for our storage needs. The use of NAND makes sense because of the performance and inherent robust nature of the storage medium when used in a highly mobile (and sometimes dropped) tablet.
However, using NAND flash isn't exactly cheap, so most tablets that we see these days top out at either
128GB in consumer devices
256GB for professional devices
, a company that is deeply invested in producing HDDs, is maneuvering to extend its reach into the booming tablet market with new storage solutions.
The company is introducing its new 2.5" Ultra Mobile HDD that is only 5mm thin and weighs 3.5 ounces. Seagate says that this new HDD will offer 500GB of space (with an 8GB flash buffer), while offering power consumption that mirrors a 64GB SSD and performance that matches a 16GB SSD.
Naturally, Seagate says that its 500GB Ultra Mobile HDD solution would be cheaper than either the aforementioned SSDs.
Seagate's 500GB Ultra Mobile HDD (pictured on the left)
“Coupling an ultra-thin, high-capacity HDD with software designed to optimize integration into tablets at a value-add price has allowed us to deliver a truly ground-breaking solution, enabling our partners to reimagine the mobile device,” said Steve Luczo, president, CEO and chairman of Seagate. “By empowering our OEMs with this revolutionary new technology, we have invited the industry to re-think the mobile market making this offering a true game-changer in the world of storage.”
While the idea of getting 500GB of storage space with SSD performance at a lower price point sounds intriguing, we also have to realize that this is still a 2.5" form-factor device in a slimmer package. That means that the footprint of the drive will still take up a lot of real estate within the tablet's chassis. And that extra space gobbled up by the drive's packaging will mean less space for things like the internal battery.
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RE: platter drive
9/10/2013 10:36:40 AM
Do you realize there are SSD drives as big as 3TB? The key here is cost and size. A tablet costs roughly $500 and putting a 500GB SSD drive, even a big one, could add an additional $200 and additional bulk.
The funny thing about all this is Apple fans are now willing to pay $200 more for 48GB more storage so if they offered 500GB of storage they would probably charge $500 more and people would still pay. 16=200, 32=300, 64=400, 128=500, 256=600, 512=700
RE: platter drive
9/10/2013 12:22:18 PM
I think the comment was more to the point that HDDs have moving parts and introduce new potential issues for tablets/phones (e.g. in the event of a dropped device and the HDD's heads crash). I too am curious about this.
How much "Shock" can these HDDs absorb if they are dropped? What about if I am running or working out? As an example, I listen to music on my phone when exercising. How will that (albeit small) level of shock affect the phone while it is in use?
I'm not saying it is a big deal, as if they are confident in the performance of it, but I am skeptical of the potential reliability implications it may have.
RE: platter drive
9/11/2013 7:12:28 AM
The largest SSD is 10.2TB PCI-E, but it's pricepoint is like that of a fancy car $100K or somesuch.
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