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Tuesday, February 23, 2016

Dedicated USB Type-C flash drive marks maturing of connector

By Nick Flaherty

SanDisk has launched its first dedicated USB Type-C flash drive, pushing up read speeds to 150Mbit/s.
The company had already launched a dual drive that combined a USB Type-C and the existing Type-A connector, but the dedicated Ultra USB Type-C (USB-C) flash drive is designed specifically for next-generation devices and marks the maturing of the Type-C connector.
The need for a dual device came from the difference between the incompatible Type-A and Type-C connectors, while the underlying embedded controller for USB3.1 is the same for all the drives.
The first dedicated USB Type-C flash drive from SanDisk 
“We expect to see many new USB Type-C supported devices released in 2016,” Dinesh Bahal, vice president of product marketing at SanDisk. “As more consumers purchase ultra-mobile PCs, smartphones and tablets that feature this new, more advanced USB standard, it is critical to offer a complete ecosystem of compatible products. New offerings, like the USB Type-C Flash Drive, will give consumers the capabilities they’ve come to expect from traditional Type A ports, but with the added benefit of better performance.” 

 The new SanDisk Ultra USB Type-C Flash Drive is available in up to 128GB and delivers USB 3.1 performance of up to 150MB/s read speed, making it SanDisk’s fastest and highest capacity USB Type-C offering. The USB drive features a slim, retractable design to protect the reversible connector and is compatible with the SanDisk Memory Zone app for Android. The app, which is available for free through the Google Play Store, auto-launches upon insertion of the drive into a compatible device, allowing immediate access to the user’s content and easy file management3.
“USB Type-C connectors could be a game-changer, as they offer significant benefits to consumers, such as a slim design and reversible plug orientation," said IDC research VP Shane Rau. "We’ve already seen a considerable increase over the past year when the connector began showing up on new products from major devices manufacturers. As demand increases, we expect more and more solutions to hit the market, such as the SanDisk Ultra USB Type-C Flash Drive.”
The drives have a five-year warranty and come in capacities of 16GB, 32GB, 64GB and 128GB with U.S. MSRPs of $19.99, $29.99, $49.99 and $79.99, respectively.
Sony has launched a dual Type-A and Type-C drive that ships this month
Several flash drive makers, including SanDisk, already have dual drives that combine the Typee-A and Type-C connectors. Sony last month launched its USB CA1-series with 130MB/s read transfer speeds and densities up to 64Gbytes. The sleek connector is tailored to fit multiple devices such as your smartphone, yet robust enough to also fit a tablet and laptop for quick sharing and easy back up. The drive is available this month.
Lexar also launched a dual JumpDrive, the M20c, last year. This has read speeds up to 150Mbit/s and write of 60Mbit/s for its highest density 64GByte drive.

SanDisk already had a dual Type-C and Type-A drive
Kingston Digital, the Flash memory affiliate of Kingston Technology, last year also launched its DataTraveler microDuo 3C USB Flash drive that combined both USB Type-A and Type-C connectors. This provides up to 64GB of extra storage with read speeds up to 100MB/s and write speeds up to 15MB/s. 
Kingston Digital's dual Type-A and Type-C drive

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