Western Digital unveiled the company’s plans for the future during the Wells Fargo TMT Summit and, among the news, said it already has the technology to produce HDDs of up to 22 TB starting in 2022. In addition, in the next few years it plans to launch drives of up to 30 TB using only ePMR (energy-assisted perpendicular magnetic recording) and OptiNAND, without the need for heat-assisted magnetic recording (HAMR) or microwave-assisted magnetic recording (MAMR).
For the home user, the search for SSDs is far superior to that for HDDs, largely due to performance and access times. However, traditional hard drives are still essential, especially for companies that work with huge volumes of data such as data centers and cloud storage servers.
With this market increasingly focused on cloud operations, Western Digital continues to invest heavily in increasing the performance and capacity of magnetic disks. The simplest way to increase the capacity of this type of drive is to increase the number of magnetic disks.
Introducing #OptiNAND, a new technology architecture from Western Digital, years in the making, that incorporates embedded iNAND flash to improve performance, reliability, and to increase capacity.https://t.co/vROKBiJ6xh pic.twitter.com/k84dtZ7nk6
— Western Digital (@westerndigital) August 31, 2021
Western Digital’s 20TB drives currently have 9 disks of 2.2TB each, but the company is already looking to release 10-disk drives starting in 2022, increasing the capacity to 22TB.
30TB disks without the use of new writing processes
With its 20TB disks, the company introduced the combination of ePMR, perpendicularly assisted magnetic writing, and OptiNAND technologies, which bring an embedded iNAND drive to optimize access times, reliability and maximum disk capacity utilization.
According to Western Digital itself, OptiNAND has the potential to allow storages of up to 50 TB, but the limit without changing the writing process to HAMR or MAMR will be 30 TB.