updated 04:25 pm EST, Wed November 28, 2007
Toshiba 80GB Car Drive
Looking to grow the market for in-car computers, Toshiba today introduced the largest-ever hard drive built specifically for vehicles. The MK8050 series stores just 80GB but includes the shock tolerance to handle engine vibration or the jolts from the road underneath. These new 2.5-inch drives are 50 percent more resilient than past models despite the size increase, Toshiba boasts. The company also creates a cushion of air around the read head that prevents it from scratching the platters during a car trip, even at altitudes as high as 3.4 miles above sea level where the pressure would otherwise not be enough to prevent an accident.
Toshiba is unlikely to offer the drive separately but mentions that the 80GB disk is likely to find its way into many cars as well as add-in decks, such as GPS navigation systems that can hold massive amounts of map information and stereo receivers that can store tens of thousands of songs or hundreds of videos. The MK8050 will be in mass production by March of next year and should be in use for shipping products shortly afterwards.