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Seagate reaches 2 billion hard disk drive shipment milestone

It only took 34 years, but Seagate has become the first hard disk drive (HDD) manufacturer to ship two billion drives.

But while it took 30 years to ship its first billion hard disk drives, Seagate topped two billion in only four years, which the company called "a staggering number fueled by the explosive demand for storage."

In recent years, the company redefined its external drive line-up with the GoFlex series, introduced the first ultra-portable wireless drive, and launched the Backup Plus portable drive for digital use, all of which contributed to the final push toward two billion shipments.

"This is truly an impressive accomplishment and I am proud to lead this company as we celebrate this success," CEO Steve Luczo said in a statement. "This achievement is a testament to the commitment of our employees whose relentless dedication and personal pride continue to be the fabric of this company."

Social media and mobile devices continue to boost demand for digital content storage, Seagate said, tipping analyst estimates that video and photo-sharing storage needs will quadruple by 2015.

Seagate is trying to keep up with the changing times, as well, announcing earlier this month that it will phase out production of 7200rpm mobile HDDs, replacing them with third-generation solid state hybrid drives (SSHDs), which combine NAND flash memory with mechanical disk drive capacity.

Three new SSHDs include a 500GB, 7mm drive for ultra-thin laptops, a 1TB drive for high-end, full-sized laptops, and a desktop PC drive with up to 2TB capacity and 8GB of NAND flash memory.

Take a closer look at Seagate's history, and how it reached the two billion mark with its interactive infographic online.

Image Credit: Flickr (downhilldom1984)