Hewlett Packard (HP), IBM and Seagate, the founders of Linear Tape Open (LTO), have reiterated their backing for open tape technology after winning certification from the European Computer Manufacturers Association (ECMA).
The ECMA said last week that the LTO Ultrium format is now the tape storage industry standard.
Chris Straghalis, strategic planning and development manager at Seagate, said: "It is a testament to the technology, and it shows the importance of open format.
"We are three competitors that have come together to create this standard, and then license it to other competitors. The fact that we are giving a choice, and multiple sources to obtain it from, has contributed to its success."
The vendors also said that since September 2000, when the technology first became available, more than one million LTO Ultrium tapes have shipped.
"It is encouraging and unprecedented that so many tapes have been shipped," said Stephen Holmes, HP's LTO business manager. "Most of the automation vendors are shipping Ultrium libraries as well. LTO is low-risk, and we are giving resellers and end users a choice. We have a treasure chest of technology to pool together."
Mick Turner, European tape marketing manager at IBM, said: "Channel partners enjoy the choice because, in the current climate, having so many vendors manufacturing one product means more competitive pricing and more margins for them."
Straghalis explained that the trio has kept to the plan outlined in 1998. "We are not going to change the roadmap; we think it meets the market's needs. We will be looking at second-generation products by 2003," he said.
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