By blending high performance, speed and affordability, Seagate's third-generation solid-state hybrid drives (SSHD) are generating industry buzz this week. The new drive lines include the Seagate Laptop SSHD, 7mm-high Seagate Laptop Thin SSHD, and the Seagate Desktop SSHD.
Seagate is marketing its new drive line as the most affordable way for OEMs to increase laptop performance. The drives offer storage performance up to 40 percent faster than previous generations, and the Laptop and Laptop Thin SSHDs can add as much as 30 percent to total system performance regardless of the processor inside the system.
Here are some more data points that are turning OEM heads: Seagate SSHD technology is up to five times faster than a standard 5400 RPM notebook hard drive. Seagate said consumers can boot a laptop in less than 10 seconds with a combination of Windows 8 and SSHD technology. According to PC Mark Vantage tests, every action related to getting information from storage is faster, including booting, loading files and applications, and running computer-based tasks.
Charles King, principal analyst at Pund-IT, said the company's aim is to chart an affordable path between customers' desire to benefit from both the blazing performance of SSDs and the low price of high capacity HDDs.
"Seagate achieves this by integrating modestly sized SSDs and traditional HDDs together, and using its Adaptive Memory technology to determine which data should reside on the higher performance SSD," King told us. "The resulting mix is likely to attract bargain hunters and users who need much higher storage capacities than today's SSDs can provide."
Dell, Lenovo, Hewlett-Packard and Origin PC are all singing the praises of Seagate's new SSHD. Kirk Schell, vice president of Dell's commercial PC group, said, "Dell plans to incorporate Seagate technology across an array of our next-generation products so our customers can benefit from the quality, performance, responsiveness and increased capacity these SSHD's can provide."
With 1TB of capacity available, Seagate said the Laptop SSHD offers consumers enough space to download, store and stream rich media content such as gaming or high-definition video without sacrificing performance or responsiveness. And with a 500 GB option measuring only 7mm high, the firm said the Laptop Thin SSHD can be incorporated into most ultra-thin, ultra-sleek laptop systems.
"By incorporating Seagate's SSHD technology into our product offerings we are able to address customer demand for greater speed, shorter boot up and response times, optimum storage capacity and better battery life, all at a lower price point," said Jerry Gross, vice president of Lenovo global procurement.
The Desktop SSHD promises what Seagate calls an "instant on" desktop experience. The Desktop SSHD will perform up to four times faster than other desktop HDD-based storage alternatives, as measured by PC Mark Vantage benchmark software.
As King noted earlier, Desktop SSHD uses Seagate's Adaptive Memory technology to identify and store only the most critical data a system needs to go fast. That, the company said, means the Seagate Desktop SSHD will cost just slightly more than a standard hard drive while delivering faster performance. The Seagate Desktop SSHD features up to 2 TB capacity and 8 GB of NAND Flash.
"Our customers want the highest storage capacity with the ability to access their data easily and quickly," said Fredrik Hamberger, vice president for consumer PC business at HP. "Integrating Seagate's SSHD solution into our rapidly growing portfolio of industry-leading PCs will offer our customers a superior experience while running multiple applications."