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Samsung Unveils World’s First Universal Flash Storage (UFS) 256GB Memory Card

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Samsung Electronics Co. Ltd., the world's largest memory chipmaker, on Thursday, unveiled the industry’s first removable 256GB Universal Flash Storage, or UFS 1.0 Card Extension Standard providing more than five times faster sequential read performance compared to that of a conventional micro SD card.

Universal Flash Storage Card UFS


Coming in a variety of storage capacities including 256, 128, 64 and 32 gigabyte (GB), the UFS memory cards are expected to bring in a substantial performance boost to the external memory storage market, allowing greater multimedia experiences. The Samsung memory cards are ideal for use in high-intensity shooting devices, such as high-resolution video cameras, 3D VR devices, action cameras, and drones.

The new UFS standard will offer best user experiences, mainly in high-resolution 3D gaming and high-resolution movie playback. It provides reading speed five times than that of a typical Micro SD Card, reading sequentially at 530 megabytes per second (MB/s) which is nearly equivalent to the speeds offered by the most widely used SATA SSD drives.

With this standard, users can easily read a 5GB, Full-HD movie in an estimated 10 seconds, compared to a conventional UHS-1 microSD card, which would take more than 50 seconds with 95MB/s of sequential reading speed. Likewise, at a random read rate of 40,000 IOPS, the 256GB card offers more than 20 times higher random read performance compared to a typical microSD, which delivers roughly around 1,800 IOPS.

When it comes to writing, it is naturally slower at 170 MB/s sequential write speed, but that's still double the speed of the top-end microSD card. The new 256GB UFS memory card processes 35,000 random IOPS, which is 350 times higher than the 100 IOPS of a conventional microSD card. With significant performance boost, the latest UFS card substantially decreases photo thumbnail loading time, multimedia data downloading time and buffer clearing time in burst shooting mode, which, on the whole, can be beneficial, specifically to DSLR camera users. To click 24 large/extra fine JPEG images, 1,120 megabyte (MB)-equivalent continuously with a high-end DSLR camera, the 256GB UFS card takes less than seven seconds, in comparison to a UHS-1 microSD card which normally takes about 32 seconds, at 35MB/s.

To attain the high level of performance and most power-efficient data transport, the UFS card supports various commands with command queuing features and allows synchronized reading and writing through the use of separate customized paths, doubling throughput.

As the leading memory chip maker, Samsung Electronics has been aggressively developing UFS solutions for the marketplace, while devoting to JEDEC standardization of the Universal Flash Storage 2.0 specification in September 2013 and the Universal Flash Storage (UFS) 1.0 Card Extension standard in March 2016.

Following its launch of the first ever 128GB embedded UFS chip in January last year, the company introduced a 256GB embedded UFS memory for high-end mobile devices in February of this year. Beginning this month, Samsung Electronics also completed the Universal Flash Storage Association (UFSA)’s certification program that gauges electrical and functional specifications for compatibility of a UFS memory card, and the company’s new UFS card products were approved as UFSA-certified UFS cards with the right to use the official UFS logo for the first time in the industry.

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