Hitachi, Intel Partner on High-End SSDs

Storage giant Hitachi and chipmaker Intel have announced plans to develop enterprise-class solid-state drives for use in servers and workstations, using high-performance Serial-Attached SCSI and Fiber Channel interfaces. The companies expect to ship their first products in early 2010…and, if nothing else, the announcement signals both that SSDs are getting closer to the mainstream in storage technology, and hint at what may be coming down the pike for consumer-oriented systems in a year or two.

"The new solid-state drives for the enterprise include a number of architectural breakthroughs and improve performance and energy usage models that will change enterprise computing," said Intel NAND Solutions Group president and general manager Randy Wilhelm, in a statement.

The drives will be sold exclusively under the Hitachi GST brand, and use Intel NAND flash memory and SSD technology.

Hitachi is currently the third-largest maker of traditional hard drive storage devices, and the partnership with Intel marks the first time the company has entered into the SSD storage business. By focussing on enterprise-class solutions and servers, Hitachi no doubt hopes to steer clear of Toshiba and other manufacturers developing SSDs for notebook computers and other consumer devices.