Samsung on March 7 shipped what it called the "worlds first hybrid hard drive" to the commercial marketplace, but it will get an argument from Dynamic Network Factory, which started shipping its own hybrid storage hard drive on Feb. 1.
Hybrid hard disks combine a standard disk drive with solid state—usually NAND flash-based—random-access memory in a design that is energy efficient.
Samsungs MH80 Series hybrid hard drive is offered in 80GB, 120GB and 160GB capacities, said a spokesperson for the company, which is based in Seoul, Korea.
The MH80 hybrid hard drive is currently shipping to select OEM customers and will soon be available in retail and commercial outlets, the spokesperson said. Details on pricing and availability will be released soon, the spokesperson said.
Optimized to work in Windows Vista-capable notebook PCs, Samsungs MH80 is a 2.5-inch hybrid hard drive with 128 or 256MB of flash memory. It combines a hard disk drive with a OneNAND Flash cache and Microsofts ReadyDrive software, offering faster boot and resume times, increased battery life and greater reliability compared to traditional magnetic media technology, the spokesperson claimed.
"This is the beginning of smaller, faster disk drives that we will be seeing in the marketplace. The key point that should be emphasized is energy efficiency," Dianne McAdam, director of enterprise information assurance for The Clipper Group in Wellesley, Mass., told eWEEK.
"These drives use a lot less energy than other drives. Energy costs are becoming a big concern in many data centers today—these data centers are looking to stem the rising tide of electrical costs. These disks use less power—and that is great news," McAdam said.
The Samsung hybrid hard drive preserves the high densities of magnetic storage technology, while the advanced NAND flash technology lowers power consumption and offers higher reliability and faster read/write access than traditional hard drives, the spokesperson said.
As a result, the drive consumes 70-90 percent less power than a traditional hard drive, which extends the battery life by 30 minutes before a recharge is needed, the spokesperson added.