Toshiba intros 160GB, 5,400-RPM 1.8-inch hard drive

The market for tiny storage devices is booming as ultra-light notebooks continue to multiply, and Toshiba seems to wants a bigger piece of the action. The Japanese company has unveiled two new 1.8-inch hard drives (PDF) with 5,400-RPM spindle speeds and capacities of 80GB and 160GB—the highest in the industry, it claims.

The 80GB MK8017GSG is a single-platter drive, but quite unsurprisingly, Toshiba has to use two platters to make the 160GB MK1617GSG. Both drives feature 8MB buffers, 15-ms seek times, and 150MB/s Serial ATA interfaces with micro-SATA connectors. Toshiba also quotes noise levels of 18dB at idle and 23dB during seeks for the 160GB model, and 16-22dB for its 80GB sibling.

Both drives will make it to PC manufacturers and distributors some time in August, Toshiba predicts. The company expects meaty sales, too. It quotes an IDC report that says 1.8" hard drive shipments will see a 58% annual growth rate by 2012 thanks to rising thin-and-light mobile PC shipments.

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