There is a report that Quantum has decided to cease R&D on DLT and SDLT technologies, favouring LTO instead.

According to CEO Rick Belluzzo in his Aug 17th AGM PowerPoint deck the LTO deal with HP will save Quantum $15 million a year. The tape business is a $5 billion market. His slides say the high-end tape market is growing at 0.5 percent a year; the mid-range at 4.4 percent and the low-end is shrinking at -4.6 percent a year.

The mid-range is dominated by LTO and that's where Quantum will focus its tape efforts. The HP deal will save cost and so increase profit. Profit-seeking is causing a stronger emphasis on Quantum's branded tape business, implying a de-focus from its OEM tape business.

The low-end is the value DLT space and that is a managed-decline business now.

Tape is: "increasingly just for long-term archive/disaster recovery". The growth is in disk-based data protection wih de-duplication/capacity-optimised storage having a CAGR of 108 percent between 2006 and 2010.

Quantum has been concerned to build itself a high-growth data protection business outside tape and that's where ADIC has been vital.

We also learn that Sony's SAIT-2 tape format is only being supplied to PetaSite library customers. There are no OEMs for the format and no single drive market. The SAIT-1 format will be withdrawn later this year.

Confirmation is being sought from both Quantum and Sony. If true both moves confirm the near total dominance of LTO in the Windows/Unix server 'super tape' product space.