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Sony Electronics today announced its current development plans for future Advanced Intelligent Tape(TM) (AIT) technology solutions, including making efforts to expand the AIT architecture to eventually offer nearly one terabyte of capacity in the 8mm cassette form-factor. According to Sony, it surpasses past technological limitations, substantially increasing the recording density of magnetic tapes by over 32 times since the introduction of AIT-1 in 1996. The recently demonstrated storage areal density of 6.5 Gbits/inch2 will enable the company to extend its long-range AIT roadmap to a sixth-generation member before the end of the decade.
"Sony is committed to maintaining the AIT technology leadership by doubling capacity and data transfer rate about every two years," said John Woelbern, director of tape streamer OEM marketing for Sony Electronics' Core Technology Solutions Company. "The current AIT-2 products and soon-to-be-released AIT-3, together with a demonstrated roadmap to AIT-6 clearly shows Sony's ability to execute to the roadmap, validates the scalability of AIT and demonstrates Sony's continued strong investment in this technology."
Sony's next-generation AIT-3 drives are scheduled to become available starting in the third calendar quarter of this year, offering capacity, performance and reliability currently unmatched by any other tape drive system in its price class. AIT-3 will provide up to 100GB of native capacity (260GB with compression) and a 12MB/sec sustained native transfer rate (31MB/sec with compression) for a list price of under $4,000.