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SanDisk, one of the most popular companies around for flash products, has announced the next step up in flash-based hard drives. In both 1.8" and 2.5" form factors, SanDisk is introducing 64GB Solid State Disks, making them one of the first vendors to announce such a product.
They list some fairly impressive specs on the units too, ones that if true would make them rival any other magnetic disk of comparable size and form factor. Supposedly, both units have an average access time of 0.11ms and an average read speed of 67MByte/sec, all while consuming a mere 1W of power when in use (0.4W idling). This results in them stating a Vista notebook equipped with one of these could boot in 30 seconds. The MTBF for these units is listed at 2 million hours, making me and many others wonder what manufacturers are doing to solve the issues of flash "write-death". As SSDs become more popular, it will be very interesting to watch how they survive over the years. I still have many magnetic hard disks that are 10 years old and still in operation. Will SSD be able to claim the same?
The disks are scheduled to enter production during 3Q 2007. Prices aren't announced yet, but they definitely won't be cheap. However, when 300GB of mobile storage isn't needed and battery life comes at a premium, SSD are going to be just what everyone wants. You can read the full press release at SanDisk's site.