Sunday, June 22, 2003

Tiny Drives

The new micro-hard-drive from Cornice is sparking a mini-revolution in consumer electronics. The drive holds 1.5 gigabytes of data but only costs about $60 in quantity, making it much cheaper than Flash memory.

The Cornice Storage Element, a miniature hard drive

The Cornice drive measures 5mm x 42.8mm x 36.4 mm (7,800 cubic mm) and weighs 14.6 grams. It can easily fit inside things like digital cameras, MPG camcorders, MP3 players, USB disk drives and so on.

Besides the small size, the thing that is so interesting about this drive is the approach the manufacturer took. The drive is not packaged as a stand-alone, removable part. Instead, it's designed to be glued right onto the product's motherboard. It integrates into the product and uses the product's CPU and memory. This approach helps keep the size down and the price low. It also reduces power consumption.

Here are some comparisons:

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