December 11, 1996 in Social Responsibility News

SAMSUNG Develops 5.0-gigabyte Hard Disk Drive

.One disk can store the equivalent of 106,000 standard newspaper pages.
.Three models with recording density ranging from 1.67 to 5.0 gigabytes.
.Transmission speed is 33.3 MB/sec.

(SEOUL, Korea) - Samsung Electronics Co., Ltd. (SEC) recently unveiled its latest industry leading high-density hard disk drives (HDD) with recording densities ranging from 1.67 to 5.0 gigabytes. PCs are increasingly operating in a "memory-hungry" multimedia environment, so research efforts at Samsung have been stepped up to expand memory capacity.
Samsung Electronics put some 50 researchers to work on a US$6 million, seven month project to develop a hard disk drive with 1.67 gigabytes of memory on a single disk - the densest memory yet achieved anywhere. The new device will be on the market in the first quarter of 1997.
The research project resulted in three hard disk drive versions: a 1-disk unit with 1.67 gigabyte capacity, a 2-disk unit with 3.2 gigabytes of memory and a 3-disk unit totaling 5.0 gigabytes. A single disk can store the equivalent of approximately 106,000 standard English language newspaper pages of data - nearly seven years worth of newspapers (based on 42 pages/day).
Samsung's new hard disk drives transmit data at 33.3 megabytes (or 106.5 still frames of video data) per second. It can show full screen video, instead of the half screen performance of most multimedia PCs. A super-fast spindle motor transmits data fast enough to support full motion picture video.
A sophisticated Magnetic Read head and Super Extended Partial Response For Maximum Likelihood (E2PR4ML) signal processing increases track recording density 48% over other products, from 5,400 to at least 8,000 tracks per inch. High precision servo technology is applied to strengthen the sound and overcome flaws in the head output speed resulting from the improved recording density. A single 3.5" disk can store 5,344 still pictures or 204 hours eof audio data.
This kind of high-performance hard disk drive is expected to lead the world market in the second half of 1997, as multimedia PCs come out with stronger audio/video functions that can store DVD data.

Samsung Electronics first marketed 40MB hard disk drive in 1989. To narrow the technology gap with the competition, the company expanded its research force, set up a hard disk drive research laboratory in Silicon Valley (US) and built up two plants in Korea (Kumi and Suwon). With this latest hard disk drive, Samsung Electronics is believed to be at least a couple of months ahead of its competition.
Samsung's state-of-the-art plant in Kumi has four automated production lines and four semi-automated production lines with an annual capacity of 6.5 million hard disk drives. That capacity will be expanded to 27 million units by 2000 and to 31 million units the next year, representing an estimated 11% of the world market and making Samsung Electronics the world's fourth largest maker of this key PC component.
Next year, high-performance hard disk drivers will commonly have disks with a capacity in excess of 1 gigabyte. The world market for hard disk drives is estimated at 120 million units in 1996, 140 million units in 1997, 170 million units in 1998, 200 million units in 1999 and 240 million units in 2000 - an annual growth of 21%.

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