Seagate drives expand

Get ready for bigger notebook hard drives. Seagate Technology LLC of Scotts Valley, Calif., just began shipping a line of 2.5-inch, 160GB drives called Momentus. The drives use perpendicular recording, which stands data on end rather than flat against a disk surface for extra density.

According to research firm IDC Corp., notebooks with drives larger than 80GB made up just 10 percent of the market in 2004. IDC expects that to reach almost 50 percent this year.

The 5,400-rpm Momentus, shipping now, uses the Ultra ATA interface and according to the company can withstand 350 Gs of operating shock, making it an attractive check-box feature for rugged notebook shoppers.

A faster Serial ATA version is due out later this year.

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