64MB SmartMedia card unveiled

Aiming at the booming market for digital devices, Toshiba in Tokyo has unveiled two new flash memory products, a 64MB SmartMedia card and a super-thin 512MB chip.

Flash memory, which retains the data stored on it even when the power to the device in which it is installed is off, is increasingly in demand for portable digital devices such as digital cameras, personal digital assistants and audio players. A Toshiba official said that the company expects the market for such products to grow dramatically over the next three years.

The postage-stamp-sized SmartMedia card, which can be swapped between digital devices, stores up to 72 digital images with 1800 by 1200 pixel resolution or up to one hour of CD-quality music. The card has double the memory of current SmartMedia flash memory cards.

Toshiba is the largest manufacturer of SmartMedia cards, currently producing 500,000 pieces a month.

The company is developing a 128MB flash memory chip, which is expected to ship later this year or in early 2000, a Toshiba spokeswoman said.

When the chips will reach Australia is not yet known.

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