By James Wells in Las Vegas

LAS VEGAS: Hitachi Global Storage Technologies has released the world’s largest hard disk drive, featuring 1 terabyte or 1,000 gigabytes of capacity, at the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) this week in Las Vegas.

Called the Deskstar, the product will be introduced to the US market in the first quarter of 2007, with other markets including Australia expected to receive the product from the second quarter of this year.

The Deskstar has overtaken Seagate 750GB drive as the largest hard disk drive available. At the CES in 2005, Seagate introduced its 500GB hard disk drive which was one of the major innovations at the event.

The 1 terabyte Hitachi personal video recorder, which was previewed in a national roadshow last year in Australia and is expected to be launched locally later this year, features two 500GB drives instead of a single Terabye version.

Hitachi Global Storage Technologies representatives have confirmed that the Deskstar will retail for $US399, or less than 40 US cents per gigabyte.

Hitachi Global Storage Technologies also released a second 1 terabyte drive this week called the Cinestar which will be available only to OEM companies targeting high capacity, high definition recordings.