IBM to unveil disk technology

CobraBoy! (
Mon, 10 Nov 1997 14:19:29 -0800

(expect drive prices to take a big drop)

Dear Santa....

By Reuters

November 9, 1997, 8:40 p.m. PT

IBM (IBM) plans to announce a breakthrough in

technology that the company said will pave the way
to far-better

personal computer storage devices than exist

The development, which IBM plans to unveil

tomorrow, represents a major step forward for disk
drives, said

Bob Scranton, vice president of technology for
IBM's Storage

Systems division.

Scranton said most disk-drive improvements involve

shrinking of the area needed to store individual
bits of

information. But as those areas become smaller, he
said, more

sensitive devices are needed to read the data.

"The first kind of improvement, towards
miniaturization, tends to

be a gradual evolution, but the second tends to
occur in major

steps," Scranton said.

"This breakthrough will allow us to stay on the
rapid growth

pace" of about 60 percent annual growth in drive
storage capacity,

he said.

The breakthrough IBM will announce is based on a

effect discovered in 1988. In 1994, IBM said it
successfully used

the discovery for the first time to create a
super-sensitive sensor

for detecting data on a hard disk.

According to IBM, the breakthrough, called Giant

Magnetoresistive (GMR) heads, could boost storage
density on

drive platters to more than 10 billion bits per
square inch.

In contrast, IBM said the first drive to deploy
the new technology

would set a density record with about 2.7 billion
bits per square

inch. That drive, the Deskstar 16GP, will be
available starting

next month and will hold 16.8GB (gigabytes) of
data, or enough

to hold eight hours of full-motion video.

The company also plans to announce a new series

high-performance drives, the Deskstar 14GXP, which
offers up

to 14.4GB of high-speed storage. Both families of
drives are for

desktop computers.

Suggested retail pricing for the Deskstar 16GP
family ranges

from <underline>$275 for a 3.2GB drive up
</underline>to<underline> $895 for the 16.8GB model.</underline>

The high-speed drives will range from
<underline>$675 for a 10.1GB drive</underline>

to <underline>$845 for the 14.4GB model.

IBM will begin shipping drives to personal

manufacturers worldwide next month and plans to
license the

technology to other disk-drive manufacturers,
Scranton said.


I got up feeling so down, I got off being sold out

I've keep the movie rolling, But the story's getting old now

I just looked in the mirror, Things aren't looking so good

I'm looking California, and feeling Minnesota. ...Soundgarden

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