updated 10:45 am EDT, Tue November 1, 2011
Seagate narrows Barracuda line, claims simplicity
Seagate on Tuesday cut down its Barracuda desktop hard drives to just one core model line in what may be as much a supply issue as simplification. It will drop both the Barracuda Green and XT lines and fold some of their features into the main series, with performance features like SmartAlign (4K data block) formatting and hybrid SSD/hard drive models simply showing up in the regular line. Storage will start at 250GB and peak at the previous 3TB.
All of the drives will spin at 7,200RPM and use an SATA 3.0 (6GBps) interface, although built-in cache will vary up to the maximum 64MB on high-end disks.
Green drives will be phased out in February, although the timeline for the XT isn't known.
Publicly, Seagate describes the slimming down as creating a simpler lineup that users "are asking for," according to marketing VP Scott Horn. It would also help PC builders and resellers keep costs down by reducing the amount of testing and stock they have to carry.
While ostensibly for these reasons, the simplification comes just as Seagate is facing ramifications from Thai flooding. It hasn't been hurt as directly its rival Western Digital but has acknowledged that it may have problems getting some of its components. Simplifying the line helps Seagate maximize the use of its reduced production levels.