Storage Technology Corp president Steve Jerritts has been showing the flag in Europe, and amid some decidedly bullish talk about the company’s prospects, is talking of a string of new products due out any month now. Most importantly, he says that StorageTek is ready to respond to IBM’s upcoming announcement on 3380s – the betting is a drive that stores 10Gb – any time IBM cares to introduce the product. Also in the works are an entry level printer in the racey Documation Series 5000 line of very fast impact printers, and a smaller laser printer using the Siemens engine to come in below the 100 page-per-minute Siemens-based machine it now offers. Breaking down the company’s 1986 sales of $830m, Jerritts says that 50% was accounted for by disk drives, controllers and semiconductor secondary storage, 35% by tape drives, 15% by printers. The printer proportion is expected to stay constant at 15%, but StorageTek looks for disk and tape drives to split about evenly by 1990 – not least as a result of the new 3480-type transport and the unique Nearline 4400 automatic tape cartridge library system. The company’s current installed base, on Jerritts’ figures, looks a lot more healthy than might have been imagined given the company’s bankruptcy proceedings. He says that there are 30,000 spindles of disk storage installed – and that 80% are the new 8380 3380-compatible drives. It has 40,000 tape drives installed, and 60 of the Siemens-powered laser printers. On the Nearline library system, Jerritts reckons that it will be suitable for 60% of the applications that would otherwise have used the failed optical disk.
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