Seagate’s 750GB Hard Drive

By Deane Barker on April 26, 2006

Seagate rolls out monster 750-gigabyte hard drives: Woof, that’s big. Suggested retail of $559.

For the hard drive industry, the capacity milestone pegs the biggest, fastest jump in its 50-year history.

The big leap stems from a new so-called “perpendicular recording” technology that allows drive makers like Seagate and rival Hitachi Global Storage Technologies to boost the density of a disk by aligning bits of data vertically rather than horizontally. At the same time, fewer moving components are needed in the drives.

I remember working for Citibank’s IT department in 1999-ish and marveling at the “optical jukeboxes” — robotic optical storage devices the size of a refrigerator. They cost about $150,000 each, and they stored 19GB per platter. I don’t remember how many platters they had, but they’d have had to have 50 of them to get a single terabyte.