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300GB at first, and 1.6TB later

According to reports, Maxell along with InPhase Technologies will be bringing holographic storage technology to the market at the end of this year. Maxell's director of technical marketing Rich D'Ambrise said that 300GB holographic discs will be available in November or December of this year. Maxell also indicated that sometime in 2008, the company will be introducing second generation disc that store up to 800GB of data. By 2010, Maxell is hoping to introduce 1.6TB holographic discs.

In a report, D'Ambrise said "We're happy so far that we haven't hit any obstacles with the drive or the media, and that we're on schedule to deliver to the market." Maxell said that while the technology is currently limited to enterprise customers, producing mass market holographic media and drives shouldn't take long. The company is currently working on producing media in several sizes, including stamps, credit card and regular CD size cartridges. Consumer media will range from 75GB to 100GB in the first generation said D'Ambrise. The new 300GB discs will transfer data at roughly 20MB per second, but Maxell indicated that we should see faster rates as the technology progresses. According to InPhase:

High-definition video. Data archiving.  Medical imaging. Massive databases. These are just some of the applications driving the need for faster, higher capacity storage. Regulatory compliance requirements have also pushed this need into the forefront for many IT departments. InPhase’s holographic storage solutions meet the rapidly growing storage demands of business, government, medical, and educational institutions.

According to Maxell and InPhase, two companies have picked up the technology: Pappas Broadcasting and Turner Broadcasting. InPhase sampled out its technology earlier this year around CES time. Many industry experts expect holographic technology to take off in a big way after 2008. Because data is stored volumetrically throughout the depths of the disc, the technology is able to achieve capacities beyond conventional surface recording techniques used in technologies such as Blu-ray and HD DVD.

Earlier this year, InPhase told the press that holographic storage will be available commercially this year and the company has stayed true to its claim. As of now, the new holographic drives will cost roughly $15,000 to enterprises and media will cost roughly anywhere from $120 to $180 per disc. The media is currently a write-once only media, with a lifetime of roughly 50 years. Maxell hopes to improve these figures by the time 2008 comes around.

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True Future Tech
By biohazard420420 on 8/3/2006 2:27:52 PM , Rating: 2
I personally cant wait to get ahold of one of those drives and discs. But I think that the 1.6 TB of storage is a bit small. Not that 1.6 TB is a small amount of data but bieng that the data is stored volumetricaly you should be able to scale the sotrage almost exponentially. There was a news artical several years ago about the same holographic storage tech except it used a cube or rectangular storage media. Theoriectally you could just increase the thickness of the storage disc and keep gaining space. I think in 10 or 15 years if and thats a big if this storage tech is still used we could be in the PB (Petabyte) or EB (Exabyte)which seems insane now but considering 18 minutes of uncompressed Ultra High Definition Video (UHDV) consumes 3.5 terabytes of data we are going to keep needing more space.

RE: True Future Tech
By Master Kenobi on 8/3/2006 2:36:42 PM , Rating: 3
Anyone remember the data crystals in Babylon 5? This tech could easily make that a reality. Hand em a little crystal, plug it into a slot, close slot, and suddenly multi-TB of info........ The NSA will be all over this....... they have huge storage farms now, if they can get this kinda capacity, they will be in heaven....... for a few years atleast.

RE: True Future Tech
By kattanna on 8/3/2006 3:04:08 PM , Rating: 2
Anyone remember the data crystals in Babylon 5?

i can easily see those being the "thumb" drives of the not to distant future

RE: True Future Tech
By JonB on 8/3/2006 5:26:07 PM , Rating: 2
They remind me more of the "prayer fans" used by the Heechee (Gateway, Frederick Pohl). The description of the iridescent surface is a close match.

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