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Hitachi Ships 4GB Microdrive
 posted: Tuesday, August 26, 2003

 

SAN JOSE, Calif., August 25, 2003 – Hitachi Global Storage Technologies today announced that it is now shipping qualification samples of its 4GB Microdrive to consumer product manufacturers worldwide. The one-inch diameter drive features a data transfer rate that represents a 70 percent increase from the previous-generation Microdrive. The new drive will also continue its tradition of offering a significantly lower cost-per-megabyte than competitive solid-state memory solutions.

Hitachi’s 4GB Microdrive is the world’s smallest hard disk drive, weighing just over a half an ounce (16 grams) and equivalent in size to a matchbook. The miniaturized hard drive is designed for users who demand maximum capacity for storing large quantities of high-resolution digital photos and video, MP3 music, electronic games and other large files. The data storage available on the 4GB Microdrive is roughly equivalent to a full-length DVD movie or 75 hours of high-quality digital music.

Consumer product manufacturers that are evaluating the 4GB Microdrive for compatibility with current and future products include Blaupunkt, Kodak, Minolta, Nikon, Olympus, Pentax, Sigma and Sony. Many of these industry-leading companies already support Hitachi’s current-generation Microdrive in their consumer electronic devices.

"As we migrate into a world of mobile computing and communications, we will see significant growth in portable devices that use more data and have greater storage requirements," said J. Gerry Purdy, Ph.D., principal analyst, MobileTrax. "The new 4GB Hitachi Microdrive provides the capacity necessary to satisfy the skyrocketing need for affordable, high-capacity data storage in portable devices."

Miniaturization Leadership
The 4GB Microdrive is a major storage capacity breakthrough and the first of many storage miniaturization advancements that are being made by
Hitachi’s world-class product design and development team. The new drive will use ultra-miniaturized
components, including a new read-write head that is half the size of its predecessor and results in a 40-percent decrease in the height at which the head travels above the disk platter. The new head technology, called the femto slider head, opens up a next generation of head slider technology.

The 4GB Microdrive is an illustration of Hitachi’s commitment to leadership in the high-growth area of storage miniaturization. “Microdrive has been the crown jewel of our miniaturization efforts for the past five years,” said Tsuyoshi Takahashi, general manager, Emerging Markets Business Unit, Hitachi Global Storage Technologies. “There is nothing else available on the market that offers a better combination of storage capacity, compact size, performance and affordability.”