IBM Introduces Industry's Fastest Midrange Tape Drive Based on Linear Tape-Open Technology

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ARMONK, NY - 23 Nov 2004: IBM, the worldwide leader in tape drive revenue,(1) today introduced its third-generation Linear Tape-Open(TM) (LTO®) tape drive, further extending the family of IBM TotalStorage® tape offerings to clients on a global scale. The new IBM® TotalStorage 3580 LTO Generation 3 Tape Drive features the industry's fastest data throughput of currently available LTO Generation 3 tape drives, and is an excellent solution for small to mid-sized clients who require tape storage for data archival, business continuity and regulatory compliance purposes. IBM also introduced the IBM TotalStorage T800 tape drive for integration by Original Equipment Manufacturers (OEM) customers into their tape solutions, such as servers, desktop models and tape automation solutions.
With up to 80 MB per second(2) native throughput on the new IBM TotalStorage 3580 LTO Generation 3 drive, IBM's offering is the fastest of currently available LTO Generation 3 tape drives in the industry, and 17.5 percent faster than the next fastest currently available competitive offering(3). This lightning speed allows the IBM TotalStorage 3580 LTO Generation 3 drive to store the data equivalent to five million entries of a telephone book in as little as three seconds.

"For more than fifty years, our low-cost tape drive storage solutions have been an attractive option for clients looking to balance their ever increasing data growth and need for compliance and information lifecycle management -- all while keeping costs low," said Barry Rudolph, Vice President, IBM TotalStorage Tape Solutions. "By working with key IBM business partners and OEM clients across the globe, IBM is focused on delivering high capacity, ultra-fast, ultra-powerful tape drive solutions to help users simplify their infrastructure and enhance business efficiency."

The IBM TotalStorage 3580 LTO Generation 3 tape drive offering furthers the company's commitment to provide industry standard midrange tape storage solutions. According to IDC, the midrange tape drive market is expected to grow to $947 million by 2008(4).

As clients increasingly tighten their technology budgets, they must comply with storage mandates which demand reliable, low cost storage solutions that at the same time support information lifecycle management and business continuity. With increasing government regulations and internal data retention policies, companies may require records to be retained for many years, magnifying a need for affordable, scalable storage solutions that can grow with them on demand.

IBM's latest TotalStorage 3580 LTO Generation 3 tape drive provides clients with significant improvements over its Generation 2 offering, including 38 percent more tracks, 100 percent more internal buffer, and 100 percent more physical cartridge capacity. This improved physical storage capacity enables the storage of up to 800GB(5) of data on a single LTO 3 cartridge, giving technology executives the ability to manage their data more efficiently, reduce tape handling, minimize space consumption and increase flexibility.

Without sacrificing capacity or performance, the overall average power consumption of the IBM TotalStorage 3580 LTO Generation 3 tape drive has been reduced from the previous generation LTO drives by incorporating electronics that use IBM copper-based chip technology. This unique technology is designed to help reduce the total number of components in the drive, lower chip temperatures, and reduce power consumption requirements, helping to provide for a more reliable drive.

In the future, IBM plans to offer fibre channel automated tape library solutions based on native fibre channel Generation 3 drive, as well as to make the drive available to OEM partners. IBM is so far the only vendor to have delivered a native fibre channel drive in every LTO generation. Additionally, IBM also plans to incorporate Write Once, Read Many (WORM) functionality in the future, based on technology provider company standards, into its LTO Generation 3 tape drives.

The planned availability date of both the new IBM TotalStorage 3580 LTO Generation 3 tape drive and the IBM TotalStorage T800 tape drive is December 17, 2004. The IBM TotalStorage 3580 LTO Generation 3 tape drive will be sold through IBM and IBM usiness partner channels and the IBM T800 will be resold by various OEM partners. IBM Global Financing is available for as low as 3.7 percent.

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