IBM is opening a new plant in China. The $20 billion plant will manufacture magnetoresistive (MR) heads for hard disk drives.
The new plant is located in the Futian Free Trade Zone near Shenzen. 200 people will work there by the end of the year, IBM has announced.
The company said it has invested $680 million since 1996 in manufacturing capacity for MR heads in California, Europe, China and other parts of the world.
IBM pioneered the magnetoresistive technology which is now used in most high end hard drives. In November it announced an improved version of the technology, called Giant Magnetorestive of GMR. This technology will allow even greater data densities.
IBM also announced that hard disk manufacturer Maxtor will buy MR heads from IBM, and build them into its desktop PC drives. Maxtor is expected to introduce on Monday a 11.5Gbytes hard disk with heads, but it is unclear whether this device will be based on IBM technology.
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