updated 04:35 pm EDT, Thu October 4, 2007
Hitachi 100GB Blu-Ray disc
A new format promises to double the capacity of current Blu-Ray discs. Hitachi has announced the creation of a quad-layer, 100GB Blu-Ray disc, an advancement over the current 50GB dual-layer format, which is still rarely used for movies or computer backup. Companies such as TDK and Panasonic are said to have attempted 100GB discs in the past, but these versions required special optical heads; critically, the Hitachi discs can be read by any existing Blu-Ray drive, the only requirement being a firmware update.
Roll-out of the format is presently awaiting stable signal quality, but Hitachi already claims to be working on 200GB discs. These are posing a much larger technical hurdle as a result of the eight layers used, which are weakening laser penetration via reflection. [via PC Pro]