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IBM today introduced the industry’s fastest one terabyte (TB) storage tape drive, which will enable clients to protect and archive more information with less cost and less energy usage - the highest capacity and performance of any tape drive in the market.
The new IBM System Storage TS1130 Tape Drive will be able to store up to one TB of uncompressed data per tape cartridge and with a native data rate of 160 megabytes per second (MB/s), storage backups can be completed up to 54 percent faster than the previous generation drive.
The new IBM System Storage TS1130 (GA) will be available worldwide on September 5, 2008 with a starting price of $39,050.
I'll take two ;)
My guess is that for what tape drives do, there isn't anything that matches it exactly or is better for what they're used for. SSDs have their disadvantages, too, and as far as I know TB storage on SSDs is only experimental? Also, from a wikipedia article, SSDS have a "higher vulnerability to certain types of effects, including abrupt power loss", which isn't something I'd like to have when archiving data. Tape drives generally have archival stability.
You'd think they'd be moving on from tape backup development with solid state drives and other technologies available.
Reliability of solid drives is unclear at the moment, where as tape (unsexy as it is) has been in existance for decades so practical issues of long term storage are known. $39k for a backup drives that can store priceless bank data (for example) is peanuts.