What Is A Storage Device? The Mystery Solved!

Storage Device, Storage Device, Storage Device! What this thing is all about? I know, this question is like a pain in the head and you want an answer to that. Just hold on, I am going to solve the mystery of the Storage Device for you. I assure you, It’s not going to take much energy or effort from your end. Just keep scrolling from line to line and your pain will be gone.

what is a storage device
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First of all, keep in mind that you are not alone. For most people, the concept of a Storage Device is blurred. They don’t really know much about what a Storage Device is.

To them, it could be a purely technical thing and out of their domain. But let me tell you this, there is no such thing as that. In fact, a Storage Device is as common as any other computer hardware.

We all rely on Storage Devices for one or another reason. Or let me put it this way, there is no digital experience without a Storage Device. Yeah, all of this sounds understandable, but you still have some unaddressed questions in your mind. And I have created this post to answer those unaddressed questions for you. Let’s start the post with the definition of a Storage Device below.

What Is A Storage Device

A Storage Device is a hardware that temporarily or permanently stores computer-generated data. In other words, the computer uses a Storage Device to save all types of files and applications. Additionally, a Storage device also assists the computer to perform multiple tasks without compromising its speed. What it means is that the computer processes files and runs applications at super-speed because of the Storage Device that backs it to do so. There can’t be a debate on the fact that a Storage Device is among the vital organs of a computer system that can’t be excluded from it.

History Of Storage Device

Storage Devices appeared overnight out of nowhere, right? No, it’s not the case at all. Every computing hardware shares a long history of development consisting of decades. This also applies to a Storage Device that had several rounds of development to finally be able to serve humanity. Unlike other computing hardware with decades of history, Storage Device enjoys a history that comprises more than a century. 

The earliest type of Storage Device was too complex to operate. Invented by Herman Hollerith in 1890, it was called the Punch Card powered by 960 bits of data storing capacity. I know, you would probably be laughing at 960 bits but let me tell you, it was somewhat a huge number a century ago. I mean, who really needed a big Storage Device back then? It is when, humanity had just started to welcome the role of machines, and nobody needed high-storage devices. 

After a few decades, Fritz Pfleumer of Germany made a remarkable contribution to the history of Storage Devices by inventing the Audiotape in 1928. Proved to be a better source of storage, the second oldest type of Storage Device could store Analog Signals. The Audiotape was called magnetic tape for the fact that it came with a paper strip containing glued magnetic particles. For those who are still clueless, the music cassette tapes are the prime example of Audiotape. 

Into the 1930s, the invention of Drum Memory expanded the field of Storage Devices. It opened a new door of possibilities for scientists to develop cheaper and big-space Devices. This desire led humanity to jump into the world of Random Access Memory. 

How all of this happened is no secret anymore. 

Super thanks to Dr. An Wang, Magnetic Core Memory changed the data storage method for the years to come. Wang’s invention of the Magnetic Core Memory took place in 1949. The storage device was received so well that it became an integral part of computers in the 1970s and the rest is history. 

The rest of the types of Storage Devices came into existence in the next few decades. This starts with the Hard Disk which was invented in 1956 by Reynold B. Johnson of IBM. Unlike a compact-size device, the-then Hard Disk was about the size of a small room. Yes, pretty well sounds big enough for sure.

Now was the time for Floppy Disks to expand the Storage Device options for users. Introduced by IBM in 1971, Floppy Disks were read-only Storage Devices with low space. Only a decade later, the successful business duo of Sony and Philips introduced the first-ever CD-ROM. Since we are all aware of the popularity of CD-ROM and the way it made music accessible to us, I will not dig into it.  

Things changed for the better with the introduction of the Universal Serial Bus (USB) in 1998. It could be instantly plugged into a computer to store the data. It was a wireless Data Storage Device that could be afforded by the majority of consumers. While already having so many Storage options, we got one more in the form of an SD card in 1999. Built by Japanese companies, an SD Card could offer only a few MB of space. The small yet portable device could be used on a smart phone to play media files.

Why Is Computer Storage Important?

A computer can’t perform even the basic operations without being backed by a Storage facility. A storage facility is vital to the lifeline of the computer. Without Storage, a computer is an empty machine that has no data to process. In fact, the whole concept of a computer is failed one without Storage.

A Storage facility provides the computer with a working space to store the information about the tasks and operations it performs. If there is no space for information storage, the computer would be clueless to perform the basic tasks.

Let’s keep in mind that a Storage facility is like the memory of the computer which allows it to remember the task-related processes. If you don’t have a memory, you can’t remember the things you have learned. Similarly, if a computer has no storage which provides it memory-related assistance, it wouldn’t work at all.

Types Of Storage Devices

The Storage Devices can be classified into two types depending on their properties and functions. For more info, you can check out the table below.

Primary Storage DevicesThese Storage Devices store the data and programs that are currently in use to provide the computer with quick access to it
Secondary Storage DevicesThese Storage Devices are called external memory sources which allow the computer to access the data even after the shutdown

All Storage Device Brands

Honestly speaking, there are too many companies selling Storage Devices. So, finding the best ones is like a Mission Impossible thing. Admittedly, we all do want the best products to get the best experience. Worry not and take a look at the table below to learn about the leading Storage Device manufacturers.

HitachiOne of the biggest Japanese brands in terms of delivering Storage Devices
SamsungThe South Korean multi-domain company is very well known for providing reliable storage solutions
KingstonIts one of the best companies offering several types of elite-class Storage Devices
SanDiskThe U.S based Storage Device provider enjoys a monopoly in a number of countries
SimpleTechIt’s a big brand of external hard drives
ToshibaHeadquartered in Tokyo, it’s one of the leading providers of Storage Devices in far east Asia
SeagateThis American brand is inarguably one of the best Storage Device manufacturers in the world

Frequently Asked Questions

Wrap Up

All these years, I heard many people struggling to learn about Storage devices. Those curious minds were always confused about Storage Devices and were unable to recognize even one. Hence, I realized it’s the ultimate time to pen an article for all those who are still struggling to learn about these super-fast data storage devices. 

I guess, now you know that we are all surrounded by Storage Devices. Besides being part of computers and laptops, they are just everywhere. Let’s admit the fact, that we can’t really get rid of them. At least, as long as we want to stick to a machine-dominated lifestyle like what we have today.

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Bilal Khan
Bilal Khan

Bilal might look like a Bearded Caucasian right out of a Viking movie but trust me he's a native Pakistani. He has a long list of hobbies among which staying updated on the Latest Technology and Hardware happens to be on the top. If you are looking for detailed hardware explanations through no tricky terminologies, follow him to read Tech Content curated perfectly for the human brain.

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