Seagate and Western Digital now shipping uber thin hard drives

By on June 4, 2013, 7:00 AM

Intel has arguably been the talk of the town with Computex in full swing but lest we forget that countless other manufacturers are on hand to showcase their new wares. Case in point is hard drive makers Seagate and Western Digital, both of which made headlines as the tech conference got under way.

Western Digital announced that they are now shipping what they claim is the world’s thinnest 1TB drive, aptly named the 2.5-inch WD Blue 7mm. The thinner model, available in smaller capacities down to 320GB, are designed with Ultrabooks and similar slim notebooks in mind. 7mm drives are also compatible with industry standard 9.5mm hard drive slots as well, we’re told.

The 1TB drive is available as of writing for just $139 through select distributors and resellers which includes a two year warranty.

Seagate, meanwhile, is now shipping a 5mm ultrathin hard drive to OEM partners. The drives in question are available in 320GB and 500GB capacities and are housed in steel rather than aluminum for rigidity’s sake.

The company is positioning the drives for use in tablets, a market typically dominated by flash memory. According to Seagate’s senior VP, consumers want more storage from their tablets but don’t want to pay for it. Seagate believes this drive solves that problem although there’s the obvious tradeoff of speed and battery life. Of course, manufacturers could offset the performance impact by providing a small amount of flash memory for caching purposes much like hybrid hard drives do.

Asus, Dell and Lenovo have already signed up to use the new drives although a timeline for when we can expect to see them hit consumer devices isn’t known.

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