Seagate Unveils Hard Drive for AI-Enabled Video Surveillance Deployments

SkyHawk AI is billed as providing installing security contractors, vendors and end users with smart, safe and efficient storage for always-on surveillance.

CUPERTINO, Calif. — Seagate Technology (NASDAQ: STX) announces the release of its SkyHawk AI hard disk drive (HDD), which the company bills as the first drive designed specifically for artificial intelligence (AI)-enabled video surveillance solutions.

The new offering is said to provide unmatched bandwidth and processing power to manage always-on, data-intensive workloads, while simultaneously analyzing and recording footage from multiple HD cameras.

In an announcement, Seagate cites market research that forecasts analytics on video surveillance hardware increasing from 27.6 million shipments in 2016 to 126 million shipments in 2021, as hardware manufacturers continue to include analytics sensors on NVRs. This will only increase as AI — particularly deep learning and machine learning applications, such as facial recognition and analyzing irregularities in behavior — become increasingly prevalent. In parallel, the need for fast video analytics will continue to rise, increasing the workload burden on NVR storage, according to the announcement.

“The use of AI technology in surveillance is steadily increasing — both in the edge and backend installations such as retail fronts and large city traffic management. Seagate has led the surveillance storage market since its early days, a decade ago, by delivering industry leading HDD products that have enabled more than 5x increase in exabytes during this time period,” says Sai Varanasi, vice president product line management, Seagate Technology. “We are excited to introduce smart, purpose-built SkyHawk AI solutions that expand the design space for our customers and partners, allowing them to implement next-generation deep learning and video analytics applications.”

SkyHawk AI is well-suited for intensive computational workloads that typically accompany AI work streams, as its high throughput and enhanced caching deliver low latency and excellent random read performance to quickly locate and deliver video images and footage analysis, according to the company. This enables on-the-edge decision making, eliminating the latency of exchanging Cloud-based data and processing. Equipped with Seagate ImagePerfect AI firmware, the drive reliably records high quality, sharp video footage with no dropped frames, while simultaneously facilitating AI-enabled NVR analytics, according to the company.

SkyHawk AI is now shipping to customers worldwide through appointed authorized distributors.

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