Sony has developed a new storage tape that is able to hold up to 185 terabytes (TB) of data per cartridge. Created with the help of IBM, Sony’s technology allows for tapes that can store the equivalent of 3,700 Blu-ray discs. The tape hold 148 gigabits (Gb) per square inch – beating a record set in 2010 more than five times over. Storage tapes are typically used by businesses to hold huge amounts of data for a long time.
Analysts IDC predict that by 2020, global data storage will amount to 40 trillion gigabytes – around 5,200 gigabytes per person. Using tape is a cheaper and more energy efficient method of storing data when compared to power-hungry large data centres full of hard drives. However, retrieving data from tape is a far slower process. Storage tapes only offer sequential access – meaning data has to be accessed in the order in which it was written. The tape has to literally be moved to the right position for the data to be accessed. Edited from Sony tape smashes storage record.