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Toshiba ups drives for small notebooks

The computer maker boosts the capacity of its hard drive line for mini-notebooks, tablet PCs and consumer electronics.

Toshiba on Thursday upped the capacity of its hard drive line for mini-notebooks, tablet PCs and consumer electronics.

Toshiba's Storage Device Division boosted the capacity of its slim, 9.5-millimeter hard drive line by adding a new 60GB drive. Previously, the line topped out at 40GB.

Using this new drive would allow manufacturers to roughly double the storage capacity of their smallest laptops and other consumer devices, such as portable music players. The new drive can also transfer data more quickly than older drives, thanks to a faster rotational speed, 5400 revolutions per minute and an interface that allows it to transfer up to 100MB of data per second. Drives found in older mini-notebook models, for example, rotate at 4200rpm and can only transfer 66MB per second.

"This drive unleashes performance, capacity and form factor for the next generation of mobile computers and other small digital devices," Amy Dalphy, manager of the hard drive business for the Storage Device Division said in a statement.

Indeed, most mini-notebooks, such as Sony's Vaio SR, Sharp's Actius and Dell Computer's Latitude X200, currently use a 20GB or 30GB, 9.5mm drives.

The new drive is also likely to find a home in Tablet PCs and other devices, including printers and copiers, Toshiba said.

The Storage Device Division offers a range of hard drives for notebooks in different sizes and capacities that range from 10GB to 60GB.

The division on Monday also introduced a new DVD burner for larger notebooks.