Thursday, 03 March 2016 09:01

WD brings helium drives to consumer space

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Helium filled drives were the province of data centres for their reliability, speed, low power and lower cooling properties. Now WD has bought the technology to the consumer, prosumer and SOHO space.

Western Digital Corporation (WD), a leading hard disk drive manufacturer has announced that its 8TB HelioSeal, helium-technology drives, will be available as options in its MyCloud series of network attached storage (NAS) and in WD Purple, Red, and Red Pro drives.

Helium drives exploit the characteristic lightness of the gas to increase the medium’s potential speed and storage density. Helium, which is less dense than air, creates less drag and turbulence and makes it possible to put seven platters in the same space required for five in conventional hard drives, reducing the weight-to-data ratio by 30%.

Helium drives are better for disk intensive applications like NAS, video surveillance, and centralised, rich-content – video and audio streaming. They are extensively used in data centres but this it the first foray into consumer and the SOHO space.

Launching throughout the first half of 2016, My Cloud personal storage devices (My Cloud, My Cloud Mirror, My Cloud EX2 Ultra), My Book external hard drives (My Book, My Book for Mac, My Book Duo and My Book Pro), WD Red, WD Red Pro and WD Purple hard drives will all be designed with the new high-capacity configuration.

“We are committed to integrating high-performance, high-capacity and high-quality drives into all of our solutions,” said Brendan Collins, vice president of product marketing, Western Digital Corporation. “No matter what market or application, we have a solution - whether it’s for small businesses, channel partners, enterprises or end-users. Our goal is to deliver the best and most competitive solutions on the market.”

The increase to 8TB or 16TB (with two 8TB drives in RAID 0) capacity applies to the following WD products:

External Hard Drives

  • My Book/My Book for Mac - An external hard drive solution that provides complete backup and storage with USB connectivity.
  • My Book Duo/My Book Pro - Dual-drive external hard drive solutions which provide ultra-fast storage in RAID-0 and complete backup and storage with USB and/or Thunderbolt connectivity and up to 16TB capacity.
  • My Cloud/My Cloud Mirror - A personal storage device that plugs into your router at home to provide consumers with their very own private cloud.
  • My Cloud EX2 Ultra -  As part of the creative professional series of My Cloud products, the My Cloud EX2 Ultra provides high-performance two-bay network attached storage.

Internal Hard Drives

  • WD Purple - Engineered for 24/7, always-on, high-definition surveillance security systems that use up to eight hard drives and up to 32 cameras
  • WD Red - Optimised for personal, home and small business NAS (network attached storage) systems
  • WD Red Pro - Optimised for small business and enterprise-class NAS systems with high performance and reliability.

Availability and Pricing

My Book 8TB is available at select Australian and New Zealand retailers and distributors in March.  Manufacturer's suggested retail price (MSRP) for the My Book 8TB (model #: WDBFJK0080HBK) is $499.99 AUD in Australia and $549.99 NZD in New Zealand.

My Cloud, My Book for Mac, My Book Duo, My Book Pro, WD Red and WD Purple 8TB configurations will be available during the first half of 2016. More details


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Ray Shaw

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Ray Shaw ray@im.com.au  has a passion for IT ever since building his first computer in 1980. He is a qualified journalist, hosted a consumer IT based radio program on ABC radio for 10 years, has developed world leading software for the events industry and is smart enough to no longer own a retail computer store!

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