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Samsung unveils 256GB UFS memory card that's five times faster than a MicroSD

By midian182 ยท 15 replies
Jul 7, 2016
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  1. With more people capturing high-resolution footage on their devices, there’s an increasing requirement for faster removable storage options. Step forward Samsung; the company has just announced the world’s first removable Universal Flash Storage (UFS) memory cards.

    The Korean company is offering the cards in 32, 64, 128, and 256 GB capacities. The largest of which offers sequential read speeds of 530 megabytes per second – a performance on par with many SSDs, making it about five times faster than today’s best microSD cards.

    Samsung said that the card will be able to read a 5GB, full-HD movie in around 10 seconds, whereas a typical UHS-1 microSD would take over 50 seconds. Moreover, the UFS card’s random read rate of 40,000 IOPS (input / output operations per second) is 20 times higher than that of a typical microSD.

    The card is no slouch when it comes to write speeds, either. At 170 MB/s, it’s almost twice as fast as top-end microSD cards, allowing a DSLR camera to save 24 pictures (around 1120MB) in less than 7 seconds as opposed to 32 seconds. And its random write rate of 35,000 IOPS is a massive 350 times higher.

    Samsung first launched an embedded UFS chip with a 128GB capacity back in January 2015, and it started mass-producing 256GB embedded chips for mobile devices in February this year. But at the moment there are no consumer products that support the new removable UFS cards.

    The Verge notes that while the cards do look similar to a microSD, the new pin configuration on the back is non-compatible.

    There’s still no word on price or release date. Samsung may be holding the UFS cards back until the arrival of compatible devices, the first of which could be the Galaxy Note 7.

    Permalink to story.

  2. MoeJoe

    MoeJoe TS Guru Posts: 638   +345

    Another format switch.
    Brilliant !
    SalaSSin likes this.
  3. Invizibleyez

    Invizibleyez TS Enthusiast Posts: 65   +18

    In the case of switching because of a benefit in the new format, or a limitation of the old format , I think it's good. If it costs 10x as much for a similar capacity, it won't matter, it will live a short life and die miserably. There will always be a market for a top end product no matter the cost, but the cost of production will be too high to sustain for a niche market. Odds are, Samsung owns and will charge ridiculous amounts of money to license this to other companies, and they will price this ufs chip right into the grave. This will however blaze a path for a more reasonable chip formed by an alliance of companies that will likely replace microSD anyway.
  4. VitalyT

    VitalyT Russ-Puss Posts: 3,453   +1,732

    That's a lot of assumption, considering how cheap all their SSD products are today. I would suggest just to wait and see what happens.
    ddferrari likes this.
  5. Invizibleyez

    Invizibleyez TS Enthusiast Posts: 65   +18

    It's not just another product with an open market for competition. It's a proprietary product created by Samsung. I really didn't assume as much as you think.
  6. I initially understood that this new card had the microSD form factor and that only the formatting is different? Are you saying that it's an entirely different form factor? If it's only a formatting difference, then a software/driver update should make existing devises relevant.

    IAMTHESTIG TS Evangelist Posts: 1,154   +394

    Is that "chip" the same size and shape as microSD? It sure looks close... If so why the hell would you make a completely new way of interfacing with hardware? Make it different size and shape.

    Really annoying! Reminds me of Firewire. Is it still around? Nope...
  8. Invizibleyez

    Invizibleyez TS Enthusiast Posts: 65   +18

    Directly from the article "The Verge notes that while the cards do look similar to a microSD, the new pin configuration on the back is non-compatible."
    cliffordcooley and Darth Shiv like this.
  9. DaveBG

    DaveBG TS Addict Posts: 270   +85

    Lets hope this will be in the Note 7!
  10. toooooot

    toooooot TS Enthusiast Posts: 40   +8

    Should have made it the same connector as SD. These companies still trying to come up with something proprietary that will make cash flow. And year after year, formats and tech like SD shove this proprietary stuff to the grave. Keep trying...
    Thrackerzod likes this.
  11. Uncle Al

    Uncle Al TS Evangelist Posts: 2,792   +1,533

    It's going to break your heart when you drop it into your soda by mistake!
  12. Jibberish18

    Jibberish18 TS Evangelist Posts: 594   +58

    Sweet. A tiny MicroSD card is at least double the speed of the SSD sitting in my laptop. =)
  13. Thrackerzod

    Thrackerzod TS Enthusiast Posts: 40   +30

    SD is an open standard that is used by everyone; this proprietary crap won't fly. Even Sony learned that lesson years ago; I guess Samsung wasn't paying attention.
    Invizibleyez likes this.
  14. torbuck

    torbuck TS Rookie

    UFS stands for Universal Flash Storage. From the UFS Wiki - https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Universal_Flash_Storage

    "The proposed specification is supported by leading firms in the consumer electronics industry such as Nokia, Sony Ericsson, Texas Instruments, STMicroelectronics, Samsung, Micron, SK Hynix.[4] UFS is positioned as a replacement for eMMCs and SD cards"

    UFS isn't propriety to just Samsung. It's the natural progression if microSD. Just like USB-C is the natural progression to USB-A and USB-B
    cliffordcooley likes this.
  15. Invizibleyez

    Invizibleyez TS Enthusiast Posts: 65   +18

    That's great if that's true. I hate proprietary anything. It's really nothing but a reason to charge your customers more money for choosing you. Why penalize your customers? I haven't heard of this format ever, and you would think the article would suggest more strongly this is only the first of many ufs cards to come out. They hardly hinted at it.
  16. mbrowne5061

    mbrowne5061 TS Evangelist Posts: 653   +286

    Those SSDs also follow established IEEE and other alliance standards. This seems to be Samsung just making their own thing. If they open it up with fair licensing options to other companies, great. SD card have needed a successor for some time now. However, I doubt this will be the case.

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