September 6th, 2011 by Brian Beeler
7mm Seagate Hybrid Hard Drive in the Works?
The current Seagate SSD/hard drive hybrid, the Momentus XT, has been in the market for nearly 9 months. And while Seagate has sold over 1 million of the hybrid hard drives and released firmware updates to make it better, they haven't released any serious modifications like higher capacity, more caching NAND or perhaps more radically, a 3.5" model. It seems Seagate could be poised though to release a 2.5" Momentus XT hybrid with slim 7mm drive height geared toward the Ultrabook space.
In a blog post today on Seagate's "The Storage Effect," Mark Wojtasiak wrote about the potential benefits of a hybrid hard drive in the Ultrabook space but lamented the fact that the new Acer Aspire S3 Ultrabook's drive bay is 7mm, not tall enough to accommodate the standard 9.5mm drive height the Momentus XT uses. "Today, the Momentus XT drives are standard 9.5mm drives. I can expect with 7mm becoming more and more prevalent, we’ll see the hybrid versions in the future."
7mm drive bays are going to increase market share for sure as ultra-portables gain market; the number of 7mm hard drives being released and hitting our test bench is definitely on the rise. As a result, a 7mm Momentus XT certainly makes sense - users can get a great blend of SSD-ish performance with the benefit of robust hard drive storage behind it. And a Seagate hybrid hard drive makes even more sense, since they're the only ones with a hybrid in the client computing space.
Whether or not there's a thin Momentus XT en route; there's certainly consumer demand for these drives. We'll collectively have to wait to see what Seagate has up its sleeve. Sound off in the forums about what you'd like to see.