Hitachi Rolls Out Consumer HDDs and Network Storage Adapter

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Some readers may remember when Hitachi bought storage developer Fabrik earlier this year for an undisclosed amount, including Fabriks’s SimpleTech line of external consumer-friendly devices. Now, Hitachi Global Storage Technologies has announced the first products that represent the fruit of that acquisition: two new consumer hard disk drives and a new network storage adapter that lets folks easily pop their USB drives on their network for convenient access.

“Today’s announcement further extends the Hitachi GST brand into the consumer market with the reliability, confidence, and dependability you would expect from one of the world’s leading hard drive suppliers,” said Hitachi GST branded business general manager Mike Williams, in a statement. “Re-branding SimpleTech to the Hitachi brand is an important step in differentiating our solutions in the marketplace.”

First up, the SimpleTOUGH Portable USB 2.0 drive offers water and shock resistance: the drive is supposed to be able to handle being run over by a one-ton commercial truck and being dropped from up to three meters. The drive also sports a “never-lose” foldable USB cable that’s permanently connected to the drive, runs off bus power (no separate power brick!); inside, the drives offer Hitachi TravelStar mechanisms wit 250, 320, or 500 GB capacities for $99.99, $119.99, and $149.99, respectively.

The Hitachi SimpleDRIVE Mini Portable USB 2.0 drive doesn’t have the ruggedness of the SimpleTough, but it is small, easily portable, and available in a variety of colors—and they power right off the USB 2.0 bus. The SimpleDRIVE Minis will be available in 250 GB (wine red), 320 GB (blue dusk), or 500 GB (carbon fiber) for $89.99, $109.99, and $139.99, respectively.

Finally, Hitachi is also introducing SimpleNET, a small network adapter that enables users to pop up to two USB drives on a local Ethernet network for convenient diversified access—although with 100Base-T Ethernet, it won’t keep up with a full-bore gigabit network, it ought to be able to let users get files on and off with comparative ease. The SimpleNET adapter is priced at $79.99.

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