Digital Storage in Consumer Electronics

1st Edition

The Essential Guide

Authors: Thomas Coughlin
Paperback ISBN: 9780750684651
eBook ISBN: 9780080558493
Imprint: Newnes
Published Date: 29th February 2008
Page Count: 312
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Can you imagine life without your cell phone, laptop, digital camera, iPod, BlackBerry, flat-screen TV, or DVD player? The skyrocketing demand for devices that provide simple, immediate access to large amounts of content is driving required digital storage capacity to unprecedented levels. Designing digital storage into consumer electronics is crucial to the performance and cost of these devices. However, as our requirements for digital content storage grow, so does the formidable difficulty of implementing design solutions that are rugged, long-lasting, power-miserly, secure, network-accessible and can still fit in the palm of your hand!

This book provides the background necessary to understand common digital storage devices and media. It helps readers decide which methods of storage work best for which kinds of devices, and then teaches designers how to successfully integrate them into consumer products.

Key Features

  • Presents best practices for selecting, integrating, and using storage devices to achieve higher performance, greater reliability and lower cost
  • Teardown photos provide rare visuals of the "guts" of the devices discussed
  • Covers hot topics including flash memory, DVRs, Apple iPods, home networks, and automotive electronics, from basic layouts to standards, advanced features, and exciting growth opportunities


Consumer electronics engineers, technicians, and managers, embedded engineers, system engineers, product designers & developers, network engineers and managers, programmers, marketing and sales personnel, and providers of content to electronic device end users

Table of Contents

Chapter 1 Introduction 1.1 Objectives in this Chapter 1.2 Growth in digital content drives storage growth 1.3 Economics of consumer devices 1.4 Rules for design of digital storage in consumer electronics 1.5 Classification of devices using storage in the home 1.6 Consumer electronics storage hierarchies 1.7 Multiple storage and hybrid storage devices 1.8 Chapter Summary Chapter 2 Fundamentals of hard disk drives 2.1 Objectives in this Chapter 2.2 Basic layout of a hard disk drive 2.3 Hard disk magnetic recording basics 2.4 How data is organized on a hard disk drive 2.5 Hard disk drive performance and reliability 2.6 Hard disk drive design for mobile and static CE applications 2.7 The cost of manufacturing a hard disk drive 2.8 Disk drive external interfaces 2.9 Hard disk drive technology development 2.10 Chapter Summary Chapter 3 Fundamentals of optical storage 3.1 Objectives in this chapter 3.2 Optical disc technologies 3.3 Basic operation of an optical disc drive 3.4 How data is organized on a optical disc 3.5 Optical disc form factors 3.6 Optical product reliability 3.7 Holographic recording 3.8 Optical disc storage development 3.9 Chapter summary Chapter 4 Fundamentals of flash memory and other solid state memory technologies 4.1 Objectives in this chapter 4.2 Development and history of flash memory 4.3 Erasing, Writing and Reading flash memory 4.4 Difficulties that cause “Wear” in flash memory 4.5 Common flash memory storage technologies: NOR and NAND 4.6 Bit errors


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About the Author

Thomas Coughlin

Tom Coughlin is a 25-year veteran of the digital storage industry. He has worked at several companies (including Ampex, Seagate, Maxtor, and Polaroid) designing and managing the design of digital storage products. He is the founder and organizer of the Storage Visions Conference, the leading annual event on digital storage in consumer electronics. Attendance at Storage Visions has increased about 70% annually in recent years, and includes all the major worldwide players in the technology. Tom is also a market analyst in the storage area and the author of annual reports on entertainment content creation and distribution and on the integration of digital storage into consumer electronics. He has extensive industry contacts and a broad base of support for the research required to complete this book. He has over 50 publications and six patents to his credit and is active in the IEEE Consumer Electronics Society (current chairman of the Santa Clara Valley IEEE CE Society), the IDEMA Consumer Electronics Committee (co-chair), and other professional organizations. Tom has a bachelor of science in Physics and a Masters in Electrical Engineering with a minor in Materials Science.

Affiliations and Expertise

President, Coughlin Associates, Inc.


“This book will immediately become an indispensable reference book for the storage industry movers and shakers, developers and users. It will be a valued contribution for years to come.” - Rick Wietfeldt, CTO, Emerging Technologies and Strategy, Texas Instruments, Inc. "Tom Coughlin's The Essential Guide to Digital Storage in Consumer Electronics is an excellent guide to the internal workings of increasingly ubiquitous digital storage. I highly recommend this book to anyone who wishes to understand and not simply use technology to enrich their lives." - Tom Clark, Principal Engineer, Brocade, and Board Member of the Storage Networking Industry Association