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A SUPERDISK THAT'S FIRING UP THE FLOPPY WARS

FOR A WHILE, THE RACE TO set the standard for the next generation of floppy disk drives looked like a blowout. Iomega Corp.'s 100-megabyte Zip drive pulled into an early lead and left its prime competitor, the 120-megabyte LS-120 in the dust.

Now, however, the consortium behind the LS-120 is back with an ultrathin version that can fit in notebook PCs and a new, more memorable name: SuperDisk. Also, unlike the Zip drive, it still can handle today's standard 1.44-megabyte floppies. The SuperDisk group, led by Compaq Computer, Panasonic, and 3M spin-off Imation, vows to wipe out today's 1.44-megabyte floppy drives.

Compaq Computer already uses the product in some PCs, and NEC Corp. says it will sport the $149 drive in notebooks this summer. Others may follow. In 2000, sales of high-capacity floppy drives will reach 50 million units, predicts Dataquest Inc. storage analyst Fara Yale. However, now it's not clear whether they will come from Iomega or the SuperDisk gang.

EDITED BY PETER ELSTROM
Andy Reinhardt


Updated June 23, 1997 by bwwebmaster
Copyright 1997, Bloomberg L.P.
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