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Seagate shakes up tablet market with 500GB drive

Storage vendor hopes to ‘redefine’ slab form factor with flash-performance mobile HDD

Seagate shakes up tablet market with 500GB drive
The Seagate Ultra Mobile HDD combines high capacity with a number of performance factors.

Storage vendor Seagate this week unveiled a new hard drive solution, the Ultra Mobile HDD, designed exclusively for mobile devices and said to deliver "up to seven times the storage capacity of a traditional 64GB tablet with the same power, performance and reliability of a flash device".

"Coupling an ultra-thin, high-capacity HDD with software designed to optimise integration into tablets has allowed us to deliver a truly ground-breaking solution, enabling our partners to re-imagine 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."

In creating the drive Seagate says it concentrated on shock management, heat, vibration and gyroscopic motion, all of which it tested rigorously with tablet integration in mind. The newly engineered 2.5-inch drive is just 5mm thin while weighing in at 3.3 oz (93.6g). Featuring up to 500GB of capacity, it delivers "the highest areal density available in a small, ultra-thin form factor", according to Seagate.

Seagate's use of Dynamic Data Driver software also seeks to address industry challenges through a combination of system design considerations.

"Reduced power consumption and improved performance are achieved through an intelligent caching design that is implemented at the system level," Seagate said.

"The software also provides drive protection through the use of enhanced motion sensor and thermal monitoring algorithms to control drive access and avoid usage conditions that might harm it. The drive is so well insulated that in many cases a dropped device's screen would break before its hard disk drive."

The Ultra Mobile HDD also integrates Seagate's own Zero Gravity Sensor, designed to provide better shock management. Incorporated power modes support the drive in sleep, standby and idle enabling it to consume as low as 0.14W and support longer battery life.

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