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USB 3.0 is here now!

Seagate Technology today announced it’s first USB 3.0 external storage product – the BlackArmor PS-110 USB 3.0 Performance Kit.

With the advent of larger data files and larger data collections, the need and desire for higher performance drive interfaces has been growing rapidly over the past couple of years. The time it takes to copy files over the standard USB 2.0 interface has proven to be far too long for the average consumer.

Now, with USB 3.0, users can copy those very large files and content collections in 1/3 the time.

But what is truly most exiting about USB 3.0 is the opportunities for more. The theoretical speed potential of USB 3.0 is 4.8Gb/s – 10X the speed (again theoretical) of USB 2.0. But today’s drives max out at around 100MBs (or 800Mb/s), meaning that the drive is now the bottleneck and not the interface. Being that USB 3.0 is backwards compatible with USB 2.0, there is great incentive for Seagate to optimize the latency performance of its disk drives, as the most ubiquitous interface on the planet now has the headroom to support significantly more.

Seagate has shown a 2 drive RAID 0 configuration that is USB 3.0 connected to a desktop computer. This configuration has shown read speeds of over 210MB/s – or 2 times the performance that is seen with USB 3.0 single drive products. This demonstration proves the headroom in the interface, and points to some of the things that can be done to further improve performance.

I believe we will see significant developments over the coming years in the latency performance of SATA disk drives, allowing Seagate to show further improvements in USB 3.0 speed and performance. And as the appetite for faster interfaces (with backward compatibility to legacy USB 2.0 applications) continues to accelerate, these developments will deliver on the market requirements for faster data transfer speeds.

The Seagate BlackArmor USB 3.0 Performance Kit is just that – a full solution kit. It includes a 500GB BlackArmor USB 3.0 external hard drive (with a 7200RPM drive inside) as well as an ExpressCard USB 3.0 adapter for your notebook computer. This is a portable solution designed for mobile power users – those working in the field on large data files, such as high definition video. With everything in the box, the user is given the full solution for a great price of just $179.

USB 3.0 – we’re just seeing the beginning of this next great phase in data transfer interfaces.  And the Seagate BlackArmor PS-110 USB 3.0 Performance Kit? It’s available right now on the website! How’s that for fast delivery of new product technologies?

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