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Techstination feature for Friday, September 16, 2005

High tech bling. Bloomberg Boot Camp, a report on today's technology. That's what Hitachi is calling new miniature hard drives. The company has come out with the industry's smallest one inch hard drive….and a slimmer, lighter 1.8 inch drive as well. Becky Smith…VP at Hitachi Storage Technologies…

"What we've done is we've shrunk the size of both drives, which translates to less weight for your MP3s, We've increased the capacity…being able to store anywhere between 30 and 30 thousand songs, improved power management by as much as 37 percent, which translates to increased battery life, and we have better shock protection."

The drives, dubbed Mikey and Slim, will be used in a variety of devices from digital music players to cell phones. The tiny one inch Mikey…can store up to eight gigabytes. The company faces competition from Toshiba and Seagate….and from companies that make flash memory…

"There's always a market for flash but we think that consumers are saying that they want unlimited amounts of storage. And so if you look at the price per gigabyte …really a hard drive has a clear advantage over the flash market."

The new drives include a drop sensor to prevent data loss in the event of an accident. The company calls it ESP or extra sensory protection. Hitachi says the new drives will go out to consumer electronics companies this fall…and devices using them will follow. Bloomberg Boot Camp, I'm Fred Fishkin.