Throwback Thursday: Sony's 185TB Cassette Tape Could Store 47 Million 80s Tracks And A Flock Of Seagulls

Earlier this week, when I talked about SanDisk's mind-blowing 4TB enterprise solid-state drive, I remarked that such storage densities still impress me, SSD or not. This is especially the case when I look back five years or more - the progression has been unbelievable. Perhaps more unbelievable though is Sony's latest magnetic storage technology, which could allow a storage device close to the size of a standard cassette to store up to 185TB.

Yes, I said cassette. This is quite a feat for such an 80s technology.

As the title of this post suggests, 185TB is enough to house 47,000,000 music files. Further, it's also enough to store 3,700 full-size 50GB Blu-ray discs, and over 19,000,000 10MB photos. And yes, since we're all clearly thinking it, it could also hold a lot of adult material.

Thanks to Sony's advances, this latest technology is able to store 72x as much data per square inch - so much, it puts current mechanical storage to shame. The main reason Sony's been able to make this happen is by allowing the crystals sputtered out by the deposition process to lay far more uniformly, and with less variation in size.

While this kind of storage sounds amazing as a home user, these tapes are definitely not bound for us. Instead, they're targeted at the enterprise and government, where storage density and security is far more important than performance. Even so, this kind of capability is hard to not drool over. Sony hasn't announced a launch date yet, as it still needs to refine things.

You might recall that just earlier this year, Sony and Panasonic jointly announced Archival Disc, an optical format that could result in 300GB+-sized discs. Like this tape storage, Archival Disc isn't being targetted at regular consumers either. Bummer.

Tags:  Sony, Storage, NYSE: SNE