Hitachi Maxell acquired InPhase Technologies in 2000 and the subsidiary has been working on the development of holographic media ever since. The present 300GB holographic disc is called Tapestry HDS-300R. The new DVD-like medium is being demonstrated this week at the International Broadcast Equipment Exhibition in Tokyo. InPhase announced the technology breakthrough in holographic storage earlier this year. The first generation of holodiscs is primarily aimed at commercial users, but InPhase plans to release consumer-grade products over the next two years, when the format should be standardized, hopefully.

The 300GB holodisc will have data transfer rates of about 20Mb/s and will serve as an excellent support for high-speed, high capacity film recording demanded by the entertainment industry. Enterprise-class companies should also be pleased by the advanced data archiving operations enabled by the holodiscs. In this respect, InPhase aims at displacing magnetic storage cartridges with the holodiscs.

To support the new holographic technology, Displaytech announced the availability of its Spatial Light Modulators that are to be integrated in the appropriate optical drives. A Spatial Light Modulators allows data to be written to holographic discs that feature a capacity 10 to 100 times greater than high-definition HD-DVD or Blu-ray formats.

In 2008, InPhase plans a second-generation 800GB rewritable optical disc with data transfer rates of about 80MBbps, with plans to expand its capacity to 1.6TB by 2010. The current 300GB holodiscs are supposed to retail for around $100-$125, while the optical reader drive is expected to cost $15 000.