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Sony unveils Memory Stick Micro

What, another memory card format?

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Sony and SanDisk today launched the latest Memory Stick format, the Micro.

Sony Memory Stick MicroThe compact memory card measures just 15 x 12.5 x 1.2mm, so it's not as small as the Micro SD card, also developed by SanDisk and previously known as TransFlash. Micro SD cards measure 15 x 11 x 1mm.

Like Micro SD, Memory Stick Micro will be pitched at mobile phones.

Memory Stick Micro cards run at 3.3V or 1.8V, and can shift bits at up to 160Mbps, Sony said. It expects the format to be able to store up to 32GB of data, though it was forced to admit that's a theoretical maximum. Indeed, it has yet to say what capacities the new format will offer when it comes to market sometime during H1 2006.

Sony and SanDisk said they will begin licensing the technology next month.

The original Memory Stick was introduced in September 1998. Since then, Sony upgraded the format as the Memory Stick Pro, in 2003, and introduced the more compact Memory Stick Duo. Just to confuse matters, the company has also introduce the Memory Stick Pro Duo, and we can't wait to see the Memory Stick Micro Pro Duo come to market.

Like other Memory Stick formats, the Micro incorporates Sony's MagicGate copy-protection mechanism. ®

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