Samsung debuts UHS-1 for MicroSD

Samsung is debuting a MicroSD class of cards rated for speed grades of UHS-1 , for what it is calling “LTE smartphones and other advanced mobile applications”

Passed on from SDHC and SDXC cards, the Ultra High Speed – 1 (UHS-1) speed grade has previously been used for high-capacity SD cards, but had up until now failed to show up as a MicroSD.

It can reach theoretical maximum speeds to the tune of 50MB/s (sequential), which is more than enough for extremely high bitrate applications. UHS-2 is still in the works, but is expected to serve up speeds in the range of 312MB/s.

The cards will begin shipping in 16 Gigabyte capacities with “20 nanometer-class” 64 Gb density Toggle DDR 2 modules and a Samsung microcontroller for the UHS-1 interface. Internal Samsung testing has let the world know these new memory cards will zoom along at the speed of 80 MB/s reads and 21 MB/s writes, generally four times the read speed and twice the write speed of Class 10 MicroSD cards.

“MicroSD cards with a UHS-1 interface offer users an extremely high level of performance on their LTE smartphones and for other advanced mobile applications,” said Wanhoon Hong, executive vice president, memory sales & marketing, Samsung Electronics. “This allows consumers to enjoy high-quality images and video playback directly from the memory cards, which fully support the advanced performance features of diverse digital gadgets,” 

MicroSD is the favoured Flash memory format of mobile devices such as smartphones and tablets – well, if you aren’t Apple, they are. As such, Samsung is pitching these as a requirement for the high-bandwidth capacity of LTE data transfers. UHS-1 has been developed not for LTE, as Samsung implies, but for high-bitrate tasks such as recording HD video to flash storage, doing away with digital tapes and other bulky, mechanical storage devices. LTE is just the lowest common denominator right now for its marketing department and the easiest way to drive the message home.

The new MicroSD started full-on production last month at the company’s advanced NAND fabrication plant in Hwaseong, South Korea, and higher density (capacity) MicroSD cards have been promised by the memory giant.

Pricing and availability are unavailable yet.