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SpinPoint N2 -- images courtesy PC Watch
Samsung talks about 1.8" HDDs and SSDs

Over the past few weeks, Samsung has been quickly introducing new products in its SpinPoint product family. In early April, the company announced new quiet SpinPoint S166 Series hard disk drives (HDDs) for the desktop market. The company also introduced a new speedy 7200RPM 200GB 2.5" HDD for the enterprise market.

The latest HDDs from Samsung are the new SpinPoint N2 Series drives which feature capacities ranging from 30GB on up to 120GB. Spindle speed is 4,200RPM and cache sizes range from 2MB to 8MB. The drives will be aimed at ultra-portable notebooks, Ultra Mobile PCs (UMPCs) and the portable audio player market -- in other words, be prepared for 120GB iPods and Zunes around the corner.

Despite its vast resources when it comes to flash technology, it's plain to see that the company isn't abandoning the 1.8" HDD market. Storage rival Fujitsu, however, has decided to leave the 1.8" HDD market altogether and focus its energies on flash SSD.

Samsung also provided some market analysis on 1.8" flash SSDs courtesy of DataQuest. Research shows that 1.8" SSDs are currently five times more expensive per gigabyte than 1.8" HDDs. The gap between the two will shrink slowly within the next few years. By 2010, 1.8" SSDs will still be roughly three times more expensive per gigabyte than 1.8" HDDs.

Despite the price differential, storage manufacturers and PC OEMs are pushing forward with 1.8" and 2.5" SSDs. Dell just recently announced that it would be making SanDisk's 32GB 1.8" SSD available to Latitude D420 ($450 option) and Latitude D620 ATG users ($300 option). Dell is also making the drive available as a standalone option for $549.





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