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Sony retires first-generation SAIT

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"The market is headed toward LTO," says Charlie Walsh Jr., CEO at ISSI Data. "There are a lot of people excited about LTO-4, and the advantages of LTO technology have proven hard for SAIT to compete with."

When Sony first introduced SAIT, only resellers that were focused on media and entertainment could sell it, and ISSI wasn't among them. Even though they were later eligible to sell SAIT-1, Walsh says he has just a handful of SAIT customers today and thousands of LTO customers.

One reason LTO moved quickly from being the new kid in class to achieving its most popular status is obvious: money. LTO prices dropped with each generation, while Sony's AIT proprietary technology didn't. Further, SAIT isn't the only proprietary half-inch tape format to lose out to the more popular LTO technology; Quantum's SDLT is also being cut from the company's roster as it shifts its focus more to LTO and disk drives.

--Ellen O'Brien

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This was first published in October 2007

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