IBM develops tiny drive for Microsoft PocketPC

IBM has developed a postage-stamp-size hard drive for use in the Microsoft PocketPC to be unveiled on Wednesday.

          IBM has developed a postage-stamp-size hard drive for use in Microsoft PocketPC hardware.

          IBM will initially offer a 340Mb micro-miniature hard drive for use in PocketPC hardware and will introduce later this year a 1Gb hard drive, according to industry sources who have tested early models of the PocketPC. Microsoft is scheduled to introduce its PocketPC Wednesday at Grand Central Terminal in New York.

          Microsoft believes 320Mb flash-memory cards will serve as the primary storage medium for the PocketPC in order to extend battery life. Doug Dedo, Microsoft's group product manager for mobile computing, said flash cards in PocketPC hardware will provide hours of use. By using the flash cards as a storage medium, "you can run the device all day long and not draw down the battery," he said.

          While acknowledging the existence of the 1Gb hard drive, Dedo said he wondered about its utility for mobile users. "Who can read 1Gb of data in a day?" Dedo said.

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