Seagate Unveils HAMR Hard Drive Roadmap, with 32TB Capacity Launching in Q3 2023

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Seagate recently disclosed its strategic planning for the heat-assisted magnetic recording (HAMR) technology development. The debut product will be a 32TB HAMR hard drive, superseding the existing 24TB drive based on perpendicular magnetic recording (PMR). 

The premiere HAMR drive will incorporate ten 3.2TB platters to achieve the total capacity of 32TB. The currently adopted ten-disk platform for Seagate's high-capacity PMR drives will also be utilized for the forthcoming 36TB HAMR drive comprising 3.6TB platters. The later phase of product rollout is set to feature a 40TB drive with 4TB media, as well as prospective 50TB hard drives hosting 5TB disks, currently under evaluation.

While Seagate refrains from revealing the precise launch timeline for the HAMR drives, earlier communications indicate an aim for Q3 2023. Seagate's HAMR blueprint also envisions the debut of 24TB and 28TB HDDs based on PMR technology in the imminent timeframe. As per industry prognostics, these two product series are likely to coexist until Seagate transitions its priority towards the more sophisticated heat-assisted magnetic storage solution. Importantly, Seagate has offered select data center customers the opportunity to evaluate HAMR hardware, and some HAMR HDD variants have already been dispatched for revenue generation within the Corvault systems. However, the precise capacities of these HAMR drives remain undisclosed by Seagate.

Regarding the rollout, sizable cloud service providers are projected to first adopt Seagate's 24TB PMR HDDs prior to transitioning to HAMR drives. In addition, some providers may contemplate deploying Seagate's 28TB hard drives leveraging shingled magnetic recording (SMR) technology. These 24TB PMR HDDs will represent the concluding high-capacity nearline PMR drives in Seagate's product range.

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