"Today's smartphones and tablets require the capacity to display richer images and data than traditional cellular phones," said David Kaefer, general manager of Intellectual Property Licensing at Microsoft, in a prepared statement. "This agreement with RIM highlights how a modern file system, such as exFAT can help directly address the specific needs of customers in the mobile industry."
exFAT, developed as a file system specifically for flash memory devices, is used as a successor for FAT in all scenarios where NTFS does not make much sense. Versus FAT, exFAT extends the maximum file size a flash memory device can work with by a factor of five, as well as an increase of storage capacity support from 32 GB to 256 TB. In a single directory, exFAT can handle up to 2,796,202 individual files.
At this time, exFAT is supported by Windows XP SP2 (with exFAT patch upgrade) and above, as well as Mac OS X 10.6.6 and above.
Microsoft said that it has entered into similar licensing agreements with companies such as Panasonic, Sanyo, Sony and Canon.