Toshiba intros 1.8" 100 GB hard drive

Irvine (CA) - Toshiba announced that it has developed a new version of its 1.8" hard drive, offering a capacity of 100 GB. The new drive, which is first to reach triple digits in its segment, is expected to roll out to mobile PCs starting next month and could also make its way into the next-generation video iPod.

In addition to the increased capacity, the MK1011GAH is physically 10% smaller than first-generation 1.8" drives, according to Toshiba. "We are enhancing the capabilities of PMR [perpendicular magnetic recording] with the incorporation of TMR head technology to deliver another industry-leading mobile HDD," said VP of Toshiba's storage division Scott Maccabe.

The new model MK1011GAH has two platters, four heads, and can transfer data at 100 MB per second, according to Toshiba. The company also reports a 4200 RPM platter rotation speed, a weight of 59 grams, and dimensions of 54x71x8 mm.

This announcement is fresh on the heels of a similar one from Hitachi, which plans to release a 250 GB 2.5" mobile HDD next year, claiming the capacity record for that size. That title had belonged to Toshiba as well, with its 200 GB offering that was released earlier this year. Hitachi also plans to integrate data encryption components directly inside the 250 GB drive.

According to research firm IDC, Toshiba was the market share leader for mobile hard druives in Q3 2006. In the 1.8" category, the company holds a commanding 80% share, having shipped more than 40 million since the year 2000.

Toshiba says the new 100 GB drive is RoHS compliant; shipments to computer manufacturers are planned for January 2007.