Samsung has just announced new flash memory technology that, if implemented, could enable insanely huge ebook libraries on next-generation mobile devices. According to the announcement, the new tech could also fit in external memory such as micro SD cards – except that its 256 GB capacity is way beyond the 64 GB handling limits of most current devices and mobile OSs.
Samsung declares that it is “now mass producing the industry’s first 256-gigabyte (GB) embedded memory based on the Universal Flash Storage (UFS) 2.0 standard, for next-generation high-end mobile devices.” Samsung also claims that the new memory boasts transfer speeds “nearly twice as fast as a SATA SSD for PCs,” beating the kind of rates you’d expect from a modern solid-state laptop, and “three times faster than high-performance external micro SD cards.”
And as for micro SD and external memory, the announcement declares that “the new UFS memory chips are extremely compact, even smaller than an external micro SD card.” That said, Samsung isn’t saying anything about actual external memory cards using the chips, just that they are targeted for “next-generation smartphones that support the USB 3.0 interface.”
Now, 256 GB is certainly an enormous capacity by most ebook readers’ standards. But even with Samsung’s latest leap forward, we’re still a long way away from being able to fit the entire Library of Congress on one micro SD card, or one mobile phone. One of the most commonly accepted figures for the storage volume of a fully digitized Library of Congress is 10 terabytes. A paltry 256 GB is still far, far short of that. Probably enough for most of our e-reading needs, though.