Iomega and Seagate have both announced new ultra-thin external drives that use the new SuperSpeed USB protocol. Iomega introduced a solid-state disk (SSD) and Seagate released a hard disk drive.
Iomega's SSD is its first to use the 3Gbit/sec USB connectivity also known as SuperSpeed. The Iomega External USB 3.0 SSD Flash Drive has up to 256GB capacity and is the size of an internal 2.5-in. hard drive.
USB 3.0 offers up to 4.8Gbit/sec throughput, or about 10 times the speed of USB 2.0's 480Mbit/sec. However, most of today's desktop and laptop computers do not come with USB 3.0 ports, which means data transfers will still be less than 4.8Gbit/sec.
Seagate introduced its slimmest portable hard disk drive, the FreeAgent GoFlex Ultra-Portable Drive. The GoFlex includes an NTFS driver for Mac, so that files can be stored and accessed from PC and Mac computers without reformatting. The drive is 4.33-in. long by 3.27-in. wide and .69-in thick.
As with its previous GoFlex drives, Seagate preloaded the drive with encryption software. The drive is already available and comes with a two-year warranty. Along with USB 3.0, the drive is also available with FireWire 800 or powered eSATA cables for increased connectivity or access to content over a network.
The GoFlex series ranges in capacity from 320GB to 1.5TB. Prices start at $89.99 for a 320GB model and rise to $169.99 for the 1TB drive and $229.99 for the 1.5GB version.
The GoFlex also showcases a new areal density, or per-platter capacity, from Seagate. The previous GoFlex drive series held 375GB per platter; the new one boasts 500GB.
The 1TB GoFlex aimed at general consumers who want to store photos, movies, music, documents and other typical files. The drive is also compatible with the GoFlex TV and the 1TB model now slips right into the GoFlex TV's drive slot.
GoFlex TV streams video content to televisions in 1080p high-definition format. It can also stream video from popular websites like Netflix and YouTube.
Iomega's new SSD is being marketed to high-end users who want higher performance, security and portability and who are willing to spend from $229.00 for a 64GB model to $749.00 for the 256GB drive. Iomega's new pocket-sized SSD will be available early next month in 64GB, 128GB and 256GB capacities.
The Iomega SSD comes with 256-bit hardware encryption for security, bundled anti-virus and backup software and a three-year warranty.
The SSD also comes with v.Clone software, which captures a complete virtual image of your PC -- including the operating system, all applications, settings and files -- to your Iomega hard drive.
Iomega also offers a complementary one-year subscription to Trend Micro Internet Security for the PC, or Trend Micro Smart Surfing software for Mac.
Lucas Mearian covers storage, disaster recovery and business continuity, financial services infrastructure and health care IT for Computerworld. Follow Lucas on Twitter at @lucasmearian or subscribe to Lucas's RSS feed . His e-mail address is firstname.lastname@example.org.