Intel wants to reinvent the SSD and unleashes an Optane monster

Intel Optane
(Image credit: Intel)

Intel has revealed six new memory and storage products, including a couple of new SSD offerings that the company hopes will help it break new grounds.

Among the new offerings is the Intel Optane Memory H20, the company’s next-generation storage for thin and light notebooks as well as other small form-factor and space constrained PCs. It’s built on Intel’s Optane cache that sits between the processor and the HDD, and promises to give you SSD-like performance at HDD prices.

With the H20, Intel has combined Optane Memory with quad-level-cell (QLC) 3D NAND technology to give users the best of both worlds. The new product is pitched at consumers and is designed for tasks such as gaming and content creation.

Best of both worlds

The other major highlight from Intel’s announcement is the company’s effort to help establish QLC as a mainstream technology for high-capacity drives.

To put this into action, the company has announced the D5-P5316 SSD, built around what it claims is built around the industry’s first 144-layer QLC NAND, giving it a greater-density, and higher endurance than its peers. 

Intel notes that it has been developing the 144-layer QLC NAND over the past decade, adding that the D5-P5316 SSD provides up to 200% better read performance, 38% better random read performance and 48% better latency over hard drives.

The drive will be available in two variants, one with 15.36 TB and the other with 30.72 TB. You can have both the variants in the U.2 and E1.L form factors, when they go on sale in the first half of 2021. Thanks to the capacity Intel claims the 30.72 TB PCIe SSD is the first that’ll enable a full petabyte in one rack unit.

“Optane products and technologies are becoming a mainstream element of business compute. And as a part of Intel, these leadership products are advancing our long-term growth priorities, including AI, 5G networking and the intelligent, autonomous edge,” said Alper Ilkbahar, Vice President, Data Platforms Group and General Manager, Intel Optane Group.

Mayank Sharma

With almost two decades of writing and reporting on Linux, Mayank Sharma would like everyone to think he’s TechRadar Pro’s expert on the topic. Of course, he’s just as interested in other computing topics, particularly cybersecurity, cloud, containers, and coding.