Advantages and Disadvantages of Magnetic Tape

Advantages of Magnetic Tape:

1. Unlimited storage: The storage capacity of magnetic tape is virtually unlimited because we can use as many tapes as required for recording.

2. High data density: A typical 10.5-inch reel of magnetic tape is 28800 inches long and can hold up to 6250 characters per inch. Therefore, the maximum capacity of magnetic tape is about 180 million characters.

3. Low cost: The cost of magnetic tape is much less compared to other storage devices.

4. Repaid transfer rate: Data transfer rate for magnetic tape can be more than 1 million bytes per second.

5. Ease of handling: Since it is compact and lightweight it is easier to use it.

6. Portability: The tape is wound on a reel and packed in a plastic package, hence it is a very convenient way of carrying information from one place to another.

Disadvantages of Magnetic Tape:

1. Sequential access: Magnetic tape is a sequential access device and hence data recorded on tape cannot be accessed directly. Thus more time is required for accessing the record.

2. Environmental restriction: The magnetic tapes suffer from dust and uncontrolled humidity or temperature levels. This may cause data reading errors.