While solid state drives are gaining in popularity, they are still too expensive for those that need large amounts of hard drive storage in a small form factor. Luckily well-known drive manufacturer Seagate is coming to the rescue with the world’s thinnest 2.5-inch platter hard drive at what is rumored to be a fairly reasonable price point.
While the new hard drive won’t be officially unveiled until the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) next month, official press photos have been released which basically show, well, it’s really, really thin. It measures a whopping 7mm thick and will come in both 160 GB and 250 GB flavors. Due to the size and amount of storage, this means that it is a single platter drive, but considering you’re getting that much storage in that small of a space, it doesn’t really matter, and the fewer moving pats, the better. The drives will have 8MB of cache with a 5400RPM spinning speed and a SATA 3Gbps interface, meaning its seek and transfer speeds aren’t going to be the fastest in the world.
While none of these specifications are all that impressive in this day and age, we are talking about a drive that is being designed with the idea of being put into laptops and netbooks. This is not a drive you’re going to be slapping into your gaming rig any time soon, but if you want some more breathing room on your netbook, this sounds like a perfectly physical drive solution.
No price has been announced yet for these drives, and probably won’t be until their official unveiling at CES in Jan., however, Engadget says it has been informed that they will be cheaper than similar 1.8-inch HDDs in the marketplace. If this proves to be true, we could see some Atom-based netbooks in 2010 that are offering far more storage than that market sector probably ever thought it would need.
Does a netbook really need that much storage? Sure, why not. Imagine having your MP3s with you on a device of that size. You probably aren’t going to be storing any HD videos on one of these, but with just the right mix of media files you could have a nice little entertainment system with you where ever you go.
What uses can you envision for a platter drive of this size?