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Seagate plans to bring down the 16TB HAMR... soon(er)

Salt Lake City SC16 booth talk at Steve Luczo’s company

Analysis Stifel MD Aaron Rakers went on a Seagate booth tour at SC16 and notes Seagate thinks it is a year ahead of WD and Toshiba with HAMR (Heat-assisted magnetic recording) technology.

It is targeting 2018 for HAMR drive deliveries, with a 16TB 3.5-inch drive planned, featuring 8 platters and 16 heads. We assume it will be helium-filled.

Steve Luczo’s company reckons it can get HAMR drives down to a sub $0.02/GB price area and compete effectively with QLC (4 bits/cell) flash built on 3D NAND process, at $0.09/GB or more.

Presently SAS SSDs come in at $0.55/GB or more while 3D TLC (3 bits/cell) flash is $0.20/GB to $0.30/GB.

Seagate thinks NVMe flash drive adoption won’t really take off until PCIe gen 4.0, which doubles gen 3 PCIe speed, arrives, possibly in 2017/8. ®

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