Move aside Blu-Ray. There’s a new king in storage. Sony has developed a new storage tape that is able to hold up to 186 terabytes of data per cartridge. This isn’t your old school tape. But, it does have the same weaknesses of a cassette tape.
Retrieving data from tape is an incredibly slow process compared to a hard drive. Data must be accessed in the order it was written. Imagine a cassette tape from your favorite band. You can’t automatically skip to the song you want to listen to. You have to fast forward it past all the other songs first. With a hard drive, you can access any piece of data you want at any time.
There are positives for Sony’s newest storage tape. One was the above mentioned storage. Another, is that the tape is cheaper and more energy-efficient way to store data. This is especially useful for businesses who have tons of data that isn’t being used frequently, but they want to keep.
Plus, tapes are easily moved in case of a natural disaster. Something Sony touched on in their statement.
“The rapid recovery of data systems such as databases and data servers following natural disasters, as well as secure management of information has become ever more important, and companies around the world are proceeding to build new data systems.”
“In addition, the expansion of cloud services and the creation of new markets to utilize big data have led to a growing need for a data storage media which can store large amounts of information.”
How did Sony manage to create a tape than can fit 3,700 Blu-ray discs? They used a new “nano-grained magnetic layer.” This allows more data to be imprinted on tape than has been possible in years past.
While the 186 TB tape was made with big business in mind, Sony is working on smaller, more consumer friendly storage. Back in March, Sony announced it was teaming up with Panasonic on the Archival Disc. This disc will store 1 TB of data.