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Western Digital in a strange move, has cut the warranty of Caviar Blue, Caviar Green and Scorpio Blue drives from three to two years. Channel partners received a letter from SelectWD explaining the news, where it is said that Caviar Black and Scorpio Black drives will still receive five-year warranties.
The SelectWD letter says:
This new warranty policy will be effective for drives shipped from January 2nd, 2012. It is important that you take a moment to update your website(s) and collateral to reflect this change for effected drives shipped after January 1st, 2012.
All drives shipped to distributors prior to Jan. 2nd 2012 will retain the current warranty terms. Because of existing inventory in the distribution channel there will be a short period of time when some drives with a 3-year warranty will be sold at the same time as drives with a 2-year warranty.
If you have any doubt about the warranty of a drive you purchased, you can go to support.wdc.com, select Warranty and RMA Services and proceed to the Warranty Check page.
Hitachi have only just unleashed some 4TB consumer hard drives, and throughout the the Thailand flood crisis, one would think we wouldn't see any new hard-drive announcements, well, you were wrong.
Hitachi Global Storage Technologies have just unveiled something for the enterprise market, the Ultrastar C10K900 series. This new series comes in 300, 450, 600 and 900GB sizes, which all feature a 2.5-inch form factor, a SAS 6Gbps interface, 64MB of cache, an average seek time of 3.8 milliseconds, an average latency of 3.0ms, and an operating/idle power draw of just 5.8/3.0W. A Bulk Data Encryption option will also be available on specific models.
Transcend Information Inc. have just expanded their memory card lineup with the introduction of two new products which are said to 'unleash the full potential of today's high-end digital cameras and camcorders.'
The two products are 8GB and 16GB SDHC cards, which comply with the SD version 3.01 specification, have an Ultra-High Speed Class 1 (UHS-1) rating, and are capable of delivering speeds of up to 85MB/sec.
Why didn't OCZ use the line high-octane in this new SSD... feel free to use that line, OCZ. OCZ have released yet another SSD onto the market, a new range line called "Petrol." Petrol is based on a 6Gbps SATA interface and comes in the usual 2.5-inch form factor. Ryan Peterson, CEO of OCZ Technology says:
Until today, SSD adoption has been limited to high performance applications due to the high cost of SSDs in relation to slower rotating discs, and we are proud to once again close the gap in pricing without sacrificing durability. The new Petrol Series showcases the flexibility of the Indilinx Everest platform and NDurance Technology, allowing OCZ to deliver the benefits of SSDs to a wide new set of applications while retaining the superior real world performance and reduced latency that separate Everest-based SSDs from our competitors.
Hitachi Global Storage Technologies (Hitachi GST) have just announced the industry's highest capacity 4TB storage solutions in the form of the Deskstar 5K4000 Internal Hard Drive Kit and the Touro Desk External Hard Drive. The Hitachi 4TB Deskstar 5K4000 hard drive is a 3.5-inch drive with a 32MB cache and also sports Hitachi's CoolSpin technology. CoolSpin, along with other Hitachi power management techniques, give the Deskstar 5K4000 up to 28-percent idle power savings over the Deskstar 7K3000 7,200 RPM drives.
The suggest retail price on the drive is $399.99. The kit comes inclusive of mounting screws, step-by-step instructions and a software download that allows both 32- and 64-bit Microsoft Windows, Apple OS X and Linux-based systems to access the full capacity and power of the 4TB drive.
Intel Micron have just announced the world's first 128Gb NAND device, as well as the mass production of 64Gb 20nm NAND. The new 128Gb device is a perfect compliment for small form factor tablets, smartphones, SSDs and high-performance compute devices.
The new 20nm 128Gb MLC NAND device doubles the storage capacity and performance of the companies' existing 20nm 64Gb NAND device. Intel and Micron continue to lead the industry with the most advanced NAND production process technology. The industry's first monolithic 128Gb part can store 1 terabit of data in a single fingertip-sized package with just eight die.
Doesn't sound exciting yet, does it? Well, 128Gb 20nm parts are set to go into mass production in Q2 of next year, where we should see SSD makers use octal (8) die packages using 128Gb NAND, this means we should see 1TB SSDs with just eight chips, or dual-sided 2TB SSDs. Excited now? For a more detailed breakdown of what to expect, check out the source.
Apple Insider is reporting that Apple is feeling the HDD shortage. Massive flooding in Thailand caused the HDD industry to hit a brick wall for a few months and things are just now starting to dry out for most component manufactures.
A reader contacted AppleInsider on Friday to note that the estimated shipping times for custom iMacs went up dramatically from their previous time of 1 to 3 days. The shipping estimates apply in the U.S. as well as internationally.
Good news for once regarding the flooding in Thailand and HDD manufacturers! Western Digital have reportedly restored production at at least one of their HDD manufacturing plants in Thailand one week ahead of schedule.
WD have also just increased their revenue outlook for the current quarter because of this, where they now expect $1.8 billion in revenue instead of the $1.05 to $1.25 billion previously estimated. Western Digital CEO John Coyne has said:
Much work remains to be done, but we couldn't be more pleased with the effort and results thus far, including tremendous support from our supply partners and customers. The passion, perseverance, ingenuity and execution exhibited by the Western Digital team has been extraordinary and enabled us to make substantial progress in partially restoring our operations in Thailand.
STEC have just unveiled a new SSD at the Server Design Summit today, dubbed ZeusIOPS XE. ZeusIOPS XE is the industry's highest endurance enterprise-class MLC flash-based SSD which is an extension to their flagship ZeusIOPS SSD family and enables at least 30 full capacity writes per day, every day, for five years.
Impressive, isn't it? STEC's CellCare technology is the behind-the-scenes driver that when applied to MLC flash, extends the performance, endurance and reliability of the ZeusIOPS EX drives.
The drive can fully write roughly 33 Petabytres of data over the working life of a 600GB drive, which is how it works out to 30 times per day over five years. Where STEC's CellCare technology comes in is with its unique ability to measure and manage the wear of the drive using adaptive flash management algorithms and advanced signal processing techniques.
Kingston say that the adoption of Solid State Drives will be big in 2012, all thanks to lower NAND flash prices. Nathan Su, flash memory sales director of Kingston APAC spoke to DigiTimes, saying that the average pricing for 1GB of NAND flash memory should fall to $1 US shortly.
Once this happens, we should see a drop in SSD prices and more systems receiving them as default. The other thing helping this is the mechanical hard drive prices that have skyrocketed since the floods in Thailand. Currently, SSDs are considered a niche product because of their high pricing.
Su has said that Kingston have enhanced their SSD lineup to target the 'entry-level' and 'medium range to high-end segments'. Kingston have also been moving their business focus to NAND flash products as DRAM memory becomes a smaller market that has very little profit margins. This is why we saw OCZ exit the memory market quite a while ago now.