Bigger is better. Seagate just shipped the world's first 8TB hard drives to "select customers", a new milestone for fitting gobs of data on a single 3.5-inch platter. Between all the videos I've shot and all the pictures I've taken and all the high-quality music and movies I've downloaded for years, I could easily fill this baby up.
It's meant for enterprise customers — you know, corporate data centres and such — to create denser storage arrays for cloud content and backups, which is a shame.
Unlike its rival Western Digital, which uses helium to reduce friction in a spinning disk and increase its drive capacity by 50 per cent, Seagate isn't saying how it managed to cram so much data on these hard drives. An article on Computer World speculates that Seagate is probably achieving this by using a technology called Shingled Magnetic Recording (SMR), which overlaps tracks on a platter like shingles on a roof. Seagate has said in the past that they can create 20TB drives using SMR by 2020.
The hard drives will be widely available next quarter. If you're building something like a media-centre-cum-home-server-cum-gaming-rig, you'll probably want to snag one of these. [Seagate]