updated 08:40 am EDT, Mon July 13, 2009
Hitachi: new portable HDDs
A few months after acquiring SimpleTech, Hitachi has begun two portable hard drive lines under its own banner. The rugged SimpleTOUGH and the home-oriented SimpleDrive Mini lines are bus-powered, 2.5-inch USB 2.0 drives available in 250GB, 320GB and 500GB capacities. The SimpleTOUGH line uses a Hitachi TravelStar drive in a shock and water resistant housing with built-in storage for a ruggedized USB cable. Although the company says the drives can withstand a 3 meter drop, Hitachi claims models it tested survived drops of up to 30 feet and were driven over by a one-ton truck without damage. The TravelStar drive is shock-rated at 400G while operating and 1000G when idle.
The SimpleTOUGH comes with an attached USB cable that folds underneath for storage. The package includes 2GB of free online backup using a Hitachi-branded service provided by Mozy and the company's Windows-based Joggle digital content management software, though Mozy and the drive itself work with any operating system that supports USB storage.
The more basic, SimpleDRIVE Mini drive ships in three different colors split by capacity: a 250GB version comes in red, 320GB in blue and a 500GB model appears in a carbon fiber-like black. Joggle software is also included.
The introduction marks the beginning of a rebranding for all SimpleTech hard drives, to Hitachi GST. The Apple-oriented G-Technology products however, will not be rebranded because Hitachi says they are so well-known among Mac users a name change is not necessary.
The SimpleTOUGH drives cost $100 for 250GB, $120 for 320GB, and $150 for 500GB, while the SimpleDRIVE Mini drives sell for $90 for 250GB, $110 for 320GB and $140 for 500GB. Both lines are available now.