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Personal Storage

WD Redesigns My Passport, My Book HDDs

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WD Redesigns My Passport, My Book HDDs

Western Digital announces the My Passport and My Book external HDD lines now have new "modern and innovative" designs, the result of a partnership with branding firm fuseproject.

Supposedly built with the customer in mind, the updated HDDs also feature password protection and 256-bit AES hardware encryption to further the protection of the data inside, as well as increased storage capacities.

“As the storage landscape continues to rapidly evolve, and the bars for design and user-experience have increased, the team focused on the design and user experience to catapult My Passport and My Book to the next level,” WD says. “Through the reimagined design language, we want to engage consumers in a conversation about how storage is core to their lives and how they feel more empowered by the real benefits of capturing, protecting and enjoying life’s precious memories.”

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Seagate Launches Speedy Mobile Drives

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Seagate Launches Speedy Mobile Drives

Seagate announces two of what it describes as its "most advanced mobile consumer drives yet"-- the 5TB BarraCuda and 2TB FireCuda, both based on the company's 2.5-inch 1TB platters.

The BarraCuda HDD promises best-in-class versatility, performance and reliability for any mobile PC applications. It comes in both internal and external storage options, with either a 7mm laptop upgrade design or a 15mm design for external solutions. As such, customers can either go for an internal model or a no-fuss external option.

Meanwhile the FireCuda a hybrid 2TB drive with 8GB of flash storage for faster booth times, application starts and game loading times. According to the company the onboard flash is made even faster through new firmware managing when and how the platters spin, cutting down power consumption while not sacrificing performance. It also features "Multi-Tier Caching" algorithms able to continuously analyse system use and tweak performance accordingly.

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Drobo Storage Gets USB-C

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Drobo Storage Gets USB-C

Drobo announces a first storage array equipped with a USB-C port-- the Drobo 5C, a 5-bay self-managing storage solution offering all the features of the original Drobo hardware.

Built on BeyondRAID technology, the Drobo 5C handles a variety of different size HDDs and brand, eliminating the limitations of traditional RAID systems. Drives are easily swappable, with no need for file shuffling or configuration, and installation requires no carriers or screws. A "traffic light interface" promises initial setup takes less than 10 minutes.

Meanwhile the USB-C interface is compatible with both USB 3.0 and 2.0, and offers average performance of 250MB/sec.

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WD Crams 1TB in SD Card

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WD Crams 1TB in SD Card

Western Digital claims it produced the biggest SDXC card in the world-- a SanDisk prototype with 1TB of storage, larger than that available on most laptops on the market.

Presented at Photokina 2016, such a card would be a boon to photo and video professionals working on 4K and 8K content, not to mention consumers wanting more storage capacity on their mobile devices.

“Sixteen years ago we introduced the first SanDisk 64MB SD card and today we are enabling capacities of 1TB," the company says. "The SanDisk 1TB SD card prototype represents another significant achievement as growth of high-resolution content and capacity-intensive applications such as virtual reality, video surveillance and 360 video, are progressing at astounding rates.”

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Micron Crams 3D NAND in Mobile Devices

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Micron Crams 3D NAND in Mobile Devices

Micron sets to provide mobile devices with more storage as it reveals a 3D NAND chip aimed at mid- and high-end smartphones based on the fast (and still to be found in mobile devices) UFS 2.1 storage protocol.

According to the company 3D NAND is a solution for the cramming of more storage capacity within a smaller space. The concept behind the technology is actually reminiscent of a skyscraper, since it involves stacking memory cells on top of each other-- and the higher the memory cells go, the more storage is available.

3D NAND dies have multiple layers, with vertical "pillars" intersecting each layer to create memory cells. Each pillar supports up to 32 memory cells, and each die contains over 4 billion pillars.

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WD Intros 64-Layer 3D NAND

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WD Intros 64-Layer 3D NAND

Western Digital (WD) presents the next generation of 3D NAND flash-- BiCS3, featuring 64 layers of vertical storage capability on a single 3-bits-per-cell chip, making it the smallest from the company.

Co-developed with Toshiba, BiCS3 will initially be deployed in 256 gigabit capacity before availability in a range of capacities reaching up to half a terabit on a single chip. It will run alongside the current range of BiCS2 3D NAND products.

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How to Store Data Using Single Atoms

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How to Store Data Using Single Atoms

Researchers at Delft University of Technology build a prototype storage device able to store data using single atoms-- providing theoretical capacity of 500TB per square inch.

Such capacity is 500 times more dense than the highest capacity HDDs available to date and, as lead scientist Sander Otte puts it, “would allow all books ever created by humans to be written on a single post stamp.”

The atomic storage technology makes use of a scanning tunneling microscope (STM), a technique allowing the moving of individual atoms. The prototype consists of a flat copper bed covered with around 60000 chlorine atoms, with 8000 empty spaces left around them. The STM was used to arrange the atoms in a grid with gaps representing data, bringing about a means of storage that works more or less like a sliding puzzle.

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Samsung Presents Universal Flash Storage

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Samsung Presents Universal Flash Storage

Samsung announces a successor to microSD-- Universal Flash Storage (UFS), a removable memory card format promising better performance for use in high-resolution video recording.

Based on the JEDEC UFS 1.0 card extension standard, UFS cards feature sequential read speeds of 530MB/s, a dramatic increase from the 95MB/s ofered by UHS-1 microSD cards. Random reads are also faster at 40000 IOPS, while random write speeds reach 35000 IOPS.

Sequential write speeds reach 170MB/s, almost double of of microSD cards.

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Samsung Crams 512GB in Stamp-Size SSD

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Samsung Crams 512GB in Stamp-Size SSD

Samsung starts mass production of a NVMe PCIe SSD in a single ball grid (SBG) form factor-- the PM971-NVMe, fiting up to 512GB of storage in a chip the size of a postage stamp.

For those wanting specifics, the chip crams all related components (namely x16 V-NAND flash chips, controller and 4Gb LPDDR4 RAM) in a package measuring 20 x 16x 1.5mm and weighing just 1g. However, while being small, the chip promises performance matching larger equivalents, with read speeds reaching 1.5GBps, write speeds of 800MBps and random read and write IOPS clocking at 109K and 150K respectively.

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