Almost a year ago, we spotted an article that discussed upcoming storage technologies. One of those technologies—heat-assisted magnetic recording—was being looked at by Seagate and involved using a laser and different materials to achieve much greater storage densities. InfoWorld now has an interesting update on the technology, which Seagate appears to still be working on.
According to InfoWorld, Dutch researchers have demonstrated an early application of heat-assisted magnetic recording (HAMR, for short) that can achieve write speeds 100 times faster than those of today's hard drives. Seagate believes HAMR could also make it possible to squeeze 40-50TB of data onto a 2.5" hard drive. There are a couple of catches, though. First, read operations in HAMR hard drives would still be done magnetically, so they wouldn't benefit from the same speed gains. HAMR tech is also quite a long way away. One of the Dutch researchers says working drive prototypes should be ready within ten years, and that we shouldn't see commercial HAMR-based drives until 13-15 years from now.
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