Seagate will begin offering a Compact Flash (CF) card form-factor hard-disk drive from February this year, the company said at the International Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in Las Vegas, yesterday.

The product, which is officially launched at the show today, will offer 5GB storage capacity and be targeted at applications such as digital photography, said Rob Pait, director of global consumer electronics marketing for Seagate in an interview. A 2.5GB version will also be available, the company said.

Seagate's new drive will increase competition in an already competitive sector of the hard-disk drive market. For several years Hitachi 's Microdrive has dominated the space but that position is already under pressure from companies like GS Magicstor and increasingly cheaper and capacious flash memory cards.

No pricing for the Seagate drive was immediately available but it will hold a capacity advantage over Hitachi’s and GS Magicstor’s models, which offer drives at capacities up to about 4B. That lead might not last for long, however.