Sony Offers Vision for Enterprise Tape Future
- By Scott Bekker
With the release of its 3rd
product, Sony Electronics Inc.
stated that it would halt development of its DDS line of tape and offered a
glimpse into future tape products.
Sony released its AIT-3 tape line today, marking the
third iteration of its midrange tape line.
AIT uses an 8mm cartridge with a helical scan pattern for storing backup
information. The new drives support tapes that store up to 100GB of data, with
transfer rates topping out at 12 MB/s. The previous generation, AIT-2 stored
60GB with a 6MB/s transfer rate. AIT-3 drives can read AIT-2 tapes.
AIT competes with Quantum
Corp’s SuperDLT, LTO Ultrium from a
variety of vendors, and Exabyte Corp’s Mammoth
2 for midrange backup and recovery applications.
A Sony spokesperson indicated Sony is pursuing an AIT
WORM (Write Once Read Many) format based on AIT-3. Many enterprises such as
financial services organizations are legally bound to keep records of
transactions. Sony believes that this format would appeal to these enterprises,
since it obviates the risk of erasure.
Sony also announced that it would halt development on
its 4mm DDS tape line. DDS, which uses a tape similar to Digital Audio Tape, is
used for low-end backup applications. Sony says that capacity for the format
has plateaued, and users who need greater capacity would be better served by
AIT. –Christopher McConnell
Scott Bekker is editor in chief of Redmond Channel Partner magazine.