It's done it; Seagate has achieved a 625Gbit/in2 areal density enabling it to produce 3TB Barracuda drives on just three platters instead of the current five.
It says it is on track for the channel to receive product around the middle of the year with 1TB, 1.5TB, 2TB and 3TB capacity points.
These are 3.5-inch form factor drives, and the three platter product will cost less to produce than five-platter product. We imagine its Constellation ES product will use terabyte platters too eventually by the way.
El Reg would like to point out that, if Seagate stayed with its 5-platter design, it could produce a single drive with an awesome 5TB capacity.
Seagate says its GoFlex external products will be the first to ship with drives containing the new terabyte platter technology and they will be able to hold 120 high-definition movies, 1,500 video games and, its statisticians having given up, "virtually countless hours of music".
Western Digital has a 3TB Caviar Green product using four platters with an approximate 514Gbit/in2 areal density. Hitachi GST, in the process of being bought by WD, has a 3TB Deskstar 7K3000 with a 411Gbit/in2 areal density.
The HDD industry being what it is, WD should be at the terabyte platter level in a few months. Until then Seagate's channel can say "We are the Man," and sell product as fast as Seagate can make it. ®