Seagate has begun shipping a 160GB hard drive for use in laptop computers, it said today.
The drive, which is the highest-capacity 2.5in drive on the market, according to the company, was promised last year and is Seagate's first laptop drive to use perpendicular data recording. This involves standing the magnetic fields that represent data bits upright. In most current drives these fields lie flat on the disk surface. Standing them upright means they take up less space, enabling more to be packed on the disk and the storage capacity to be increased.
Seagate first announced this drive last year, and said it would ship in the first quarter of 2006. By the end of this year, the company expects nearly all of its products will use perpendicular recording. The same technology is also being adopted quickly by other disk makers.
The Momentus 5400.3 drive is, as its name suggests, a 5,400rpm (revolutions per minute) drive and is designed for use in laptop computers. The version shipping now has an Ultra ATA/100 interface, while a second version with a faster Serial ATA interface will be available later this year, Seagate has said. No price was given for either drive.