WD® (NYSE: WDC), the world's leader in external storage solutions, today expanded its My Book® family of external hard drives to include a 2 TB capacity, the largest available capacity in a single-drive system. With its wide variety of models, WD offers a solution for every type of user, whether they're a creative power user on a Mac® or a home user on a PC. The new 2 TB My Book family includes: My Book Studio Edition™, My Book Mac Edition, My Book Home Edition™ and My Book Essential Edition™ models. 

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Market research shows that consumer creation and acquisition of digital media is growing rapidly, driving demand for increasing storage capacities. According to market research firm IDC, the number of digital cameras and camera phones in the world surpassed 1 billion (Mar. 2008). Separately, market research firm GfK reports that HD (high definition) video camcorders are experiencing record growth and now account for 42 percent of total camcorder sales (Aug. 2008). HD video requires massive amounts of drive space: at least 8 GB per hour of video. Since 2006, when Apple® began offering movie downloads, the Apple store has already sold more than 250 million TV episodes and sold or rented more than 33 million movies (Apple, Mar. 2009). 

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Hitachi Global Storage Technologies (Hitachi GST) today introduced its second-generation small form factor enterprise hard drive, the 10K RPM Ultrastar™ C10K300. The new Hitachi drive is optimized for the power and performance requirements of rack-mounted servers and networked storage arrays. Built using proven Hitachi power management technology, the Ultrastar C10K300 delivers the low power specifications that are of primary importance in today’s data centers. The new drives are offered in 147GB and 300GB capacities and ship with a dual-port 6Gb/s Serial Attached SCSI (SAS) interface, which delivers 100 percent faster data throughput than its 3Gb/s predecessor. The new industry-standard SAS interface also improves signal strength over greater physical distances, allowing IT managers to deploy larger, more complex storage infrastructures.

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The Ultrastar C10K300 is designed to provide higher server/storage density through compact 2.5-inch design, a low-power profile and improved thermal characteristics. The small form factor drive occupies 70 percent less physical space and consumes up to 65 percent less power than similar 3.5-inch enterprise drives.

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Freecom, an award-winning manufacturer of external hard drives and portable storage devices, launched the 'ToughDrive Sport', a durable, shock-resistant, 2.5" external hard drive designed to endure even the toughest conditions. This latest addition to the ToughDrive family is perfect for heavy duty users that want to carry their data on the move, from backpacking around the world to cycling up mountains.

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The ToughDrive Sport features a handy loop in one corner enabling easy attachment to bags or belts - allowing people to carry their data hands-free. The drive can also withstand falls of up to two metres and is fully protected against adverse weather conditions associated with outdoor pursuits.

The ToughDrive Sport has an outdoor sports design and an integrated USB cable designed to look and feel like a climbing rope - this makes the drive extremely portable as no external power adapter is required for charging. Ideal for mobile use given its size and robustness, the internal anti-shock mechanism insulates the hard drive against unforeseen shocks that could cause damage and result in the loss of masses of data.

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Apricorn, (www.apricorn.com) the leader in personal storage, announced today the 240GB capacity enhancement for the Aegis Mini, making it the largest capacity 1.8” external drive available on the market. Small enough to slip in a shirt pocket, Aegis Mini is an ultra-portable 1.8-inch external drive with USB 2.0 or FireWire connection. With added capacity, users can now hold up to 60,000 songs, 50,000 photos or 300 hours of video, a 50 percent increase in capacity from its 160GB predecessor.

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Smaller than a deck of cards and weighing in at a mere 3.7oz, Apricorn’s tiny portable drive offers simplicity and convenience. Its compact design centers around a 16-point omni-directional shock-mounted 1.8” hard drive, protecting the drive from the rigors of travel. With extremely low power demands the Aegis Mini is able to power on a single USB connection, helping to conserve notebook battery life and ensuring that the drive powers on all notebooks, including newer more power efficient models.

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In response to the growing demand for high-quality Network Attached Storage (NAS) by budget-conscious small office/home office (SOHO) users, Verbatim® Americas, LLC, a world leader in digital storage solutions, announced today two new higher-capacity Gigabit NAS hard drives.  Verbatim Gigabit NAS desktop hard drives now offer capacities of 1TB and 2TB for easy file sharing between any PC and Mac® desktop or laptop system on the network.

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With Gigabit Ethernet connectivity for file sharing, Verbatim NAS users can free up space on their personal computers while enjoying fast access to high-capacity, centralized storage and the ability to easily share music, photos, videos and data files. Efficient and versatile, Verbatim Gigabit NAS hard drives can also be used as a home entertainment server to stream movies to their TV through their UPnP/DLNA media player or stream music to any computer running iTunes®.  And for additional savings, instead of purchasing a printer for each individual, a single USB printer can be added to the drive’s USB host port that everyone on the network can use.

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Seagate, teaming with microprocessor manufacturing leader Advanced Micro Devices (AMD) at the Everything Channel Xchange Conference in New Orleans this week, today unveiled the world's first public demonstration of next-generation high-speed data transfer - Serial ATA 6Gigabit/second - for bandwidth-hungry desktop and laptop PC applications including gaming, streaming video and graphics multimedia.

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The Serial ATA (SATA) 6Gb/second storage interface will deliver the highest performance - burst speeds of up to 6Gigabits per second - for all PC applications, maintain backward compatibility with the SATA 3Gb/second and SATA 1.5Gb/second interfaces, and use the same cables and connectors as previous SATA generations to ease integration. The third generation of the mainstream storage interface for desktop and notebook computers also enhances power efficiency and improves Native Command Queuing, a SATA feature, to increase overall system performance and data transfer speeds of mainstream PC applications but especially applications with heavily transactional workloads such as scientific modeling and forecasting, and engineering design and simulation.

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Samsung Electronics Co., Ltd., a world leader in digital consumer electronics and information technology, today announced its new EcoGreen F2EG hard disk that delivers a massive 1.5TB of capacity with 500GB per disk. With increased recording density and reduced number of disks, the EcoGreen F2 drive is more power efficient by supporting a capacity up to 1.5TB with 3 disks.

samsung ecotriangle.jpg“Lower platter count means less power to start the motor, less power to continuously spin the motor and a lighter head-stack which takes less power to seek,” said Andy Higginbotham, director of HDD sales and marketing for the Samsung Semiconductor Storage Division. “With fewer heads and disks, the F2EG hard drive has a lower probability of head-disk failures, enabling customers to build more reliable systems.”

As hard disk capacity increases from an increased number of disks, so does power consumption. However, Samsung’s F2EG drive offers low power consumption by using EcoTriangle™, a low-power, low-heat, low-noise operation technology. With its advanced design and fewer components, the F2EG drive is 40% lower in power consumption in idle mode and 45% lower in reading/writing mode than competitive drives. Samsung’s Eco-Triangle™ technology offers more energy efficient and high performance hard drive options to manufacturers of home media PC, external HDD, set-top box, and personal NAS.

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Hitachi Global Storage Technologies (Hitachi GST) today announced that it has agreed to acquire Fabrik, Inc., a privately-held supplier of personal and professional storage solutions. Fabrik, whose leading storage brands include G-Technology and SimpleTech, strategically positions Hitachi in the fast-growing external storage business.

Industry analyst firm IDC expects worldwide personal storage device shipments to grow from approximately 52 million in 2008 to 123 million in 2012. Financial details of the transaction were not disclosed. Closing of the acquisition, which is subject to customary conditions, is expected to occur early in the second quarter of 2009.

Fabrik’s business will continue intact and form the core of Hitachi GST’s newly-formed external storage business. Hitachi GST will fully support the G-Technology and SimpleTech product lines, building upon their success and differentiation in the market. The combined company will also leverage operational, technical and product development resources, distribution channels and global reach to accelerate delivery of a full portfolio of traditional hard drives, solid state drives and branded personal and professional storage products.

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Western Digital sent out a press release this morning, announcing its newly redesigned My Book World Edition network hard drives. Available in 1TB and 2TB capacities, the My Book World Edition is designed to automatically back up files from all the PCs and Macs on a home network. The drive also features integrated UPnP media server and iTunes Music server software, allowing you to stream content directly to an Xbox 360, Playstation 3 or computer using iTunes software.

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WD® (NYSE: WDC), the world's leader in external storage solutions, today introduced its newly redesigned My Book® World Edition™ network storage drive, simplifying the critical but tedious task of backing up an entire household's precious files. Designed for consumers who have multiple computers on a home network, the new drive will be available in 1 terabyte and 2 terabyte capacities, and is compatible with PC and Mac® computers.

Consumers are amassing increasing amounts of digital media on their computers, including irreplaceable photos, movies and documents. While 70 percent of users in a recent WD study of 1,500 U.S. consumers claimed to be "backing up," most use sporadic, tedious processes such as copying to CDs/DVDs or USB thumb drives. Having several computers multiplies the work. My Book World Edition network drives are designed to automate and simplify the backup chore for the 36 million networked homes in the U.S. according to research firm Parks Associates. Just plug the My Book World Edition drive into a network router, click a few buttons and the My Book World Edition storage device backs up the files from all the PCs and Macs on the network. Any changes to the files on these computers are automatically and continuously backed up to the drive.

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Toshiba Corporation (TOKYO: 6502) and Fujitsu Limited (TOKYO: 6702) today announced that they have signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) on the transfer of Fujitsu's hard disk drive (HDD) business to Toshiba. The companies plan to conclude a transfer contract at an early date, and aim to complete the transaction in the first quarter of fiscal 2009.

Fujitsu will facilitate the transfer by bringing its HDD-related businesses and functions together in a new company. Toshiba will acquire about an 80 percent stake in this company and make it a Toshiba Group subsidiary. In order to promote a smooth transfer, Fujitsu will continue to hold a stake of under 20 percent in the new company for a certain period of time, after which it will become a wholly owned subsidiary of Toshiba.

The consolidation of the two companies' HDD businesses will enable Toshiba to reinforce its already strong position as a leading vendor of small form factor HDDs (2.5-inch and smaller HDDs), widely used in notebook PCs, mobile devices, automotive and consumer electronics. It will also give Toshiba entry into the enterprise HDD market for server and data storage system applications, where Fujitsu is currently a leader. Toshiba aims to build its position in the enterprise market to meet expected growth in demand for data storage systems.

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