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It's been four years since Eye-Fi launched the first SD memory cards capable of beaming photos and videos from any camera directly to a PC, or a range of online services, over a wireless connection. Transfers only occurred in one direction, though. Now, Toshiba is hoping to take the concept one step further with a new type of card dubbed FlashAir that can not only send and receive photos to and from a computer or server, they can also make peer-to-peer transfers.
That means if you and a friend each have one of Toshiba's new SD cards in your cameras, you'll be able to share photos and videos wirelessly without the need of a computer. Furthermore, FlashAir is supposed to use less power than other Wi-Fi enabled SD cards as this function is disabled when wireless transfers aren't happening.
There is one major caveat, though. Unlike Eye-Fi cards, which work with any camera that supports SD cards, Toshiba's new technology requires a camera that supports FlashAir for wireless transfers to work -- otherwise they would still work as a standard SD card for storage. A handful of companies are reportedly considering support already.
Toshiba's FlashAir cards will begin sampling in 8GB capacities starting this November, with volume production slated for February 2012. Pricing is yet to be finalized but they'll reportedly cost around $90. FlashAir cards will support 802.11n, WEP, TKIP, AES (WPA, WPA2) encryption; RAW, JPG and movie files; and work at Class 6 speeds.
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