IFA 2017: SanDisk Unveils Biggest Ever 400GB MicroSD Card

Western Digital (WDC) has doubled the capacity of microSD cards with the SanDisk Ultra microSDXC UHS-I card, which comes with a whopping 400GB capacity.

This makes it the world’s highest-capacity microSD card for use in mobile devices, and doubles the previous 200GB SanDisk Ultra microSDXC card that was introduced two years ago.

And in another announcement, WDC has also expanded its storage backup options for Apple iPhones with the SanDisk iXpand Base.

Android Storage

The new SanDisk brand 400GB card meanwhile should give mobile users the ability to capture and store much more content (video, photos etc) on their smartphones, without the worry about storage limitations.

But it won’t come cheap, as the 400GB SanDisk Ultra microSDXC UHS-I card will cost £224.99.

It comes with a ten-year limited warranty, and WDC said it was able to achieve this capacity breakthrough by utilising “its proprietary memory technology and design and production processes that allow for more bits per die.”

“We continue to push technology boundaries and transform the way consumers use their mobile devices,” said Sven Rathjen, VP, product marketing at Western Digital. “By focusing on achieving new technology milestones, we enable consumers to keep up with their mobile-centric lifestyles with storage solutions they trust.”

It comes as users demand increasingly large storage options thanks to the widespread available of high speed networks, rising number of apps, and the ability to use smartphones as personalised media centres.

WDC says its new 400GB card can hold up to 40 hours of Full HD video and also offers superfast transfer speeds of up to 100MB/s to deliver premium performance. These transfers speeds would allow a user for example to move up to 1,200 photos per minute.

The card also comes with an updated SanDisk Memory Zone Android app, so that users will have even greater control over their mobile device’s memory storage.

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Apple Storage

Of course, this card does not apply for Apple users, as iPhones do not offer MicroSD slots.

But WDC does cater for those iPhone users with extra storage needs with its iXpand Base. It allows  allows an iPhone to be plugged into the iXpand Base in order to automatically back up content while the phone is charging.

This combination of being able to back up whilst charging the Apple device is needed because of the limited availability of physical external connections on iPhones.

“iPhone users care deeply about their content and understand the importance of protecting it,” said Jim Welsh, senior VP, Client Solutions at Western Digital. “Our top priority is to offer convenient solutions like the iXpand Base that fit with people’s everyday habits so they don’t have to change their routine, and never have to worry about losing memories.”

The SanDisk iXpand Base provides up to 256GB of local storage, without the need to pay monthly fees for cloud-based storage. The 32GB version will cost £53.99, the 64GB costs £69.99, the 128GB costs £105.99 and the 256GB costs £176.99.

Essentially, the iXpand Base has a soft rubber top to place a iPhone and a wrap-around groove to keep a Lighting cable tidy and organised.

It is designed to quickly charge an iPhone with 15W of power while backing up all of its data via the companion iXpand Base app.

Storage needs continue to grow, and last month Sony and IBM created the highest recording areal density for tape storage media, with new tapes that can support approximately 330 terabytes (TB) per data cartridge.

Quiz: Think you know all about Flash storage?

Tom Jowitt

Tom Jowitt is a leading British tech freelancer and long standing contributor to Silicon UK. He is also a bit of a Lord of the Rings nut...

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