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Zip drives for notebooks ship

Iomega announces OEM shipments of its Zip drive for notebook PCs.

Iomega, whose 100MB Zip drive offers a lot of storage in a small package, is now making the drive for small computers.

Iomega today announced OEM shipments of its Zip drive for notebook PCs. With the 15-mm removable drive, Iomega is moving into the corporate computing market, where the company is an early entrant in high-capacity removeable storage products for notebooks.

"It's another feather in their cap," said Dataquest analyst Fara Yale. "If you want to succeed in that marketplace, you have to be well established in both desktop and notebook systems, so it's critical that they get a hold in the notebook market."

The drive has a lock feature that protects data from abrupt movement, and performs up to 40 percent faster in tasks such as opening, saving, and dragging and dropping files, according to Iomega.

It comes bundled with new Iomega audio recording and storage software, and software that facilitates storing larger-than-100MB files over multiple disks.

A total of 10 notebook manufacturers, including Acer, Hitachi, Micron, Hewlett-Packard, and NEC, have agreed to offer the Zip drive as an option or standard on selected notebook models.

In addition, CNF will offer separate drives that fit into the floppy bay of notebooks from Compaq, IBM, and Toshiba. VST Technologies will offer separate drives compatible with notebooks from Apple Computer and IBM.

Iomega is also shipping evaluation units of a 12.7-mm drive for use with ultrathin laptops.

In related news, Iomega announced that it has sold 10 million Zip drives since it launched the product in March 1995. Iomega surpassed the 9 million mark less than a month ago, on October 16.