Tuesday, July 21, 2009

USB thumb drives hit 256GB mark

DVICE

I remember my first USB thumb drive. It was a 256MB Samsung number, about the size of an old, Pez-dispenser-shaped iPod Shuffle (with the same annoying habit of blocking the USB port right beside the one you plugged it into). That was about six years ago, and in that time solid-state memory has made a lot of progress. As in, three-orders-of-magnitude progress.

Flash-memory purveyor Kingston now sells a thumb drive with a capacity 256 gigabytes: the DataTraveler 300. Yep, 256GB, all in single plastic wafer less than 3 inches long. According to the product page, that's the equivalent of 10 Blu-ray Discs, 54 DVDs or 365 CDs. It truly is a new era.

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