What is in store for the desktop

24th June 2019
What is in store for the desktop

As storage demands  explode, hard drives hold their own in the shootout with solid state.  We try out the world's biggest hard disk: 14 TB
Bangalore, June 24 2019: Our insatiable thirst for  video, mostly movie content -- and once viewed, our  very Indian  habit of  storing the  file for repeat viewing or sharing with friends --  has created a separate and lucrative business for the  data storage industry. The latest smart phones can -- between on-board memory  and micro SD card -- store 1000 GB, that is,  one terabyte of  music or movie files.  But there comes  a point beyond which  external devices storage accessories  throw up their hands, and say: 'enough'!
Much is written about the challenge posed to the good old magnetic Hard Disk Drive (HDD),  by the Solid State Disk or SSD  based on Flash drive technology, the same that we find on USB memory sticks. Yes, SSDs are small, making them handy for tablets and lightweight laptops as well as being  3 -4 times faster when it comes to data transfer speeds. But GB  for GB, they cost about 3 times as much as HDDs . Which is why obituaries written  about HDDs  and their  death at the hand of solid state,  are mostly  wishful thinking. The  Magnetic Hard Disk drive still remains the most cost effective  storage technology today, with desktop PCs their biggest market.\
I recently had a chance to try out   an internal  hard disk drive for PCs  with the largest  capacity  available today: 14 terabytes (TB).  The model I  got to try was  Seagate's Barracuda Pro desktop drive. This is an 8-platter 7200 RPM device, in the 3.5 inch size,   with its own 256 MB cache and a  top read/write speed of 250 MBPS.  Hard disks of lower capacity  have data transfer rates of up to 550 MBPS.   
As an advance on Seagate's own earlier  Barracuda drives of up to 12 TB, the new HDD uses something called Two Dimensional Magnetic Recording (TDMR)  which simply put, means two heads can read data from the same track,   thus cutting down on noise and errors.  Inspite of hefty capacity,  the 14 TB Barracuda consumes less than 7 watts of power. 
For the asking price of Rs 1,09,999 ( discounted at online sites to around Rs  90,000) Seagate also throws in a data recovery service.  ANAND PARTHASARATHY

These are early days  for HDDs storing  tens of terabytes  and we can expect the price for this capacity,  to fall with  demand,  to  around Rs 50,000 - Rs 60,000 which is at the right point,  cost-per-GB-wise, for hard drives. Right now, the  good news is: if you  do need such insanely large storage, and are  prepared to pay,  it's  out there for you.