JT Storage

JT Storage

JT Storage (also known as JTS Corporation) was a maker of inexpensive IDE hard drives for personal computers based in San Jose, California. It was founded in 1994 by "Jugi" Tandon—the inventor of the double-sided floppy disk drive and founder of Tandon Corp.—and Tom Mitchell, a cofounder of Seagate and former president and Chief Operating Officer of both Seagate and Conner Peripherals.

JTS initially focussed on a new 3" form-factor drive for laptops. The 3" form factor allowed a larger drive capacity for laptops with the existing technology. Compaq Computers was actively engaged in qualifying these drives and built several laptops with this form factor drive. Lack of a second source was a major obstacle for this new form factor to gain a foot hold; JTS licensed the form factor to Western Digital to attempt to remedy this problem. Eventually, as 2.5" drives became cheaper to build, interest in the 3" form factor waned, and JTS and WD stopped the project in 1998.Fact|date=January 2008

JTS by then had become a source of cheap, medium-performance 3.5" drives with 5400 RPM spindles. The drives, produced in a factory in India (the factory was in the Madras Export Processing Zone in the suburbs of the Southern Indian city of Madras, now known as Chennai), were known for poor reliability. Failure rates were very high and quality control was hit-or-miss: good drives were very good, still running after 5 years, whereas bad drives almost always failed within a few weeks. Because of their low-tier reputation, JTS drives were rare in brand-name PCs and most frequently turned up in home-built and whitebox PCs.

The basic design of their drives was done by Kalok for TEAC in the early 1990s.Ref patent
country=US
number=5446609
status=patent
title=Low profile disk drive assembly
gdate=1995-08-29
fdate=1992-10-15
assign1=TEAC Corporation
assign2=Pont Peripherals Corporation
class=G11B 5/012
] Ref patent
country=US
number=5886850
status=patent
title=High capacity, low profile disk drive system
gdate=1999-03-23
fdate=1995-05-15
assign1=TEAC Corporation
assign2=DZU Corporation
class=G11B 5/012
] TEAC used the design as part of a removable HDD system,cite web
url=http://www.teac.com/DSPD/pdf/hdd0040a.pdf
title=SD3250N, SD3360N, SD3540N (Removable Hard Disk Drives) - Installation guides and CMOS Setup parameters
] which was also sold under the Kalok name. After Kalok failed in 1994, JTS hired its founder as their chief technical officer, and licensed the patents involved from TEAC and Pont Peripherals.cite web
url=http://www.sec.gov/Archives/edgar/data/941167/0000950153-96-000413.txt
title=Form S-4: Registration under the Securities Act of 1933: JTS Corporation
date=1996-06-22
accessdate=2008-01-25
]

On February 13, 1996, JTS merged with video game producer Atari. It was primarily a marriage of convenience. JTS had products but little cashflow. Atari had money, primarily from a series of successful lawsuits earlier in the decade followed by good investments, but with its Jaguar console struggling in the marketplace, losses mounting, and no other products to sell, Atari expected to run out of money within two years. While JTS announced plans to continue both brands, within a few weeks of the merger becoming official on July 30, 1996, the majority of former Atari employees were dismissed and Atari's remaining inventory was sold to liquidators.

Even with the cash infusion from Atari, JTS quickly ran out of money. On February 23, 1998, JTS sold the Atari name and intellectual property to Hasbro Interactive for $5 million in cash. Later that year, on December 11, JTS filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy, converting to involuntary Chapter 7 on February 28, 1999.

References


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