IBM has begun shipping a tiny hard disk drive, which it claims is the world's smallest.
The microdrive is now being shipped to key OEM (original equipment manufacturer) partners in the small form factor storage arena, IBM said in a statement issued today.
The microdrive can be used for storage for digital cameras, handheld computers, PDAs (personal digital assistants) and notebook computers, IBM said. The storage disk will also be used in future generations of digital audio devices for portable MP3 (Motion Picture Experts Group, Level 3) players.
Diamond Multimedia Systems Inc. today announced future versions of its Rio MP3 devices will include the IBM disk drive allowing listeners to store several hours of CD-quality music, according to the statement.
The microdrive weights 16 grams and measures 1.68 inches by 1.43 inches by 0.19 inches. It can hold up 340Mb of data or the equivalent of what could be stored on 200 standard floppy disks, IBM said.
The microdrives, which will come with a PC Card adapter and field case, will be available in the U.S. and Japan in the third quarter of this year, IBM said. The cost at retail level will be US$499.
IBM, in Armonk, New York, can be reached at +1-914-765-1900 or at http://www.ibm.com/.