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HP & Sony Collaborate on DAT

PALO ALTO, Calif. and TOKYO -- HP (NYSE:HPQ) and Sony Corporation today announced an agreement to create the next-generation Digital Audio Tape (http://www.datmgm.com/) format the DAT 320 – providing improved performance and capacity over existing DAT drives.

HP and Sony are jointly developing the DAT or Digital Data Storage (DDS) standard, but will separately offer their own DAT 320 tape drives and cartridges. Similar to previous generations of DAT/DDS, the DAT 320 will be an open standard, which ensures partners can continue to obtain license rights.

Small and midsize businesses as well as enterprises with remote offices use tape to archive and back up data as a key component of their disaster recovery strategies. IDC forecasts the tape market will generate more than $1.4 billion in 2009.(1) The industry is experiencing healthy performance since tape provides SMBs with a cost-effective storage solution to handle the massive increase in digital data.

“The DAT 320 offers customers and partners a data protection solution that delivers unmatched performance and capacity,” said Bob Wilson, vice president and general manager, Storage Platforms Division, HP. “Combining the expertise of two industry leaders that share a legacy of delivering proven DAT/DDS technology will result in a new standard for tape archiving with the low cost of ownership and reliability DAT customers have grown to expect.”

Hewlett-Packard Co.