3D storage is coming a lot closer, and what was almost science fiction less than a few decades ago is now quite reality. Maxell may be offering 300GB holographic discs within a year from now. The technology is being developed by InPhase Technologies, and the primary advantage of holograph storage as a solution to eventually replace existing optical storage is that you are storing data in three dimensions, giving you a much greater data density. Starting off with a removable storage system, it will be limited to a fairly slow speed of 20Mbp/s, with Maxell planning to eventually proceed towards 1.6TB on a single disc with 6 times the bandwidth. Another firm, Japanese company Optware, is also working on similar technology.
It is being called “Holographic Versatile Disc” (HVD), and can supposedly achieve an archive life of over 50 years. Not much different from standard optical discs of today, but much longer than tape drives commonly used as removable backup solutions today.