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When Size Really Matters: Smallest Flash Cards

Summation: Soon, Flash Memory Will Be Everywhere

It won't be long before all kinds of mobile devices sport at least one slot for some kind of memory card. This makes perfect sense, simply because devices that can't accept new data or programming lock users into increasingly obsolete functionality. After all, would you buy a notebook that could only handle 256 MB RAM with no room for expansion?

Various predictions indicate that as soon as 2006, a good third of all mobile telephones in active use will also incorporate memory cards of some kind. This could mean that technologies like MMCmicro or TransFlash/MicroSD will find excellent opportunities for deployment. Their extremely low weight (less than half a gram) and tiny form factors make them good candidates for all kinds of uses, even in consumer goods like wristwatches.

Samsung furnished us with MMCmicro cards that demonstrate data read rates of 10 megabytes per second, as the company claimed in press releases dated December, 2004. In our tests, they outperformed conventional MMC Mobile cards as well as SanDisk's TransFlash products. And we can only guess that this performance will soon be surpassed by new generations soon forthcoming.

Another consequence could follow in the wake of these miniature marvels, however. Anybody who seeks to smuggle or steal data without notice or detection could make very good use of these micro cards, simply because conventional detection tools may not take notice of them at all.