Seagate Technology LLC
announced Thursday that it has begun shipping a 1-inch hard disk drive with a 6GB capacity, following rival drive maker Hitachi Global Storage Technologies Inc.’s (HGST) announcement of a similar product.
Seagate’s drive is shipping to selected device makers, said Joyce See, a spokeswoman for Seagate in Singapore. In addition to the 6GB model, Seagate offers 1-inch drives with capacities of 5GB and 2.5GB.
See declined to reveal pricing for the 6GB ST-1 hard disk drive, saying the product is being sold only to device makers and will not be made directly available to consumers. However, HGST yesterday said its 6GB 1-inch Microdrive hard disk will cost US$299, a 40-percent reduction compared to the $499 price tag the company has previously put on all of its 1-inch hard drive products when first released.
These small hard disk drives are principally designed for use in portable consumer electronics devices, such as MP3 players. The 6GB ST-1 can hold 150 hours of music, or roughly 3,000 songs, encoded at a bit rate of 128Kbps (bits per second), Seagate said in a statement.
Seagate’s customers for 1-inch hard drives include Creative Technology Ltd., Olympus Corp., Sanyo Electric Co. Ltd., Virgin Electronics LLC and others, according to the company.
The introduction of 6GB hard drives came on the same day that Apple introduced a 6GB version of its iPod Mini MP3 player, which retails for $249.