Here's some interesting news from Matsushita (Panasonic), today they have announced that a 256 MB SD Memory Card will be released in Japan on December 21st and a 512 MB SD Memory Card on January 21st. This will be good news for this particular format and for the owners of digital cameras which use SD/MMC cards. "The SD Memory Card is a digital storage medium that was jointly developed by Matsushita Electric Industrial Co., Ltd., SanDisk Corporation, and Toshiba Corporation." (10:20 GMT)

Matsushita Electric (Panasonic) Introduces 256 MB and 512 MB SD Memory Cards

OSAKA, Japan -- Matsushita Electric Industrial Co., Ltd., best known for its Panasonic brand of consumer electronic and digital communications products, today announced that it will introduce a second-generation of SD Memory Cards with larger capacities and higher data transfer rate for broadband communications applications. A 256 MB SD Memory Card will be released in the Japanese market on December 21, 2001 and a 512 MB on January 21, 2002, both at open prices. The new SD Memory Cards will be exhibited at the Panasonic booth at CEATEC JAPAN 2001, to be held from October 2 to 6 at Makuhari Messe (Nippon Convention Center) in Chiba, east of Tokyo.

The SD Memory Card is a digital storage medium that was jointly developed by Matsushita Electric Industrial Co., Ltd., SanDisk Corporation, and Toshiba Corporation. The memory card is designed with four advanced features: large memory capacity, high-speed data transfer rate, postage stamp-size compactness, and copyright protection. Its superior concept presents a wide range of application possibilities, and makes it ideal for digital data storage applications in mobile and wearable devices.

The new SD Memory Cards incorporate a fast data transfer rate of 10 MB/sec., which is five times faster than current models. As small as a postage stamp, the SD Memory Card has a capacity large enough for storing moving images. A 512 MB SD Memory Card can store a maximum of about 180 minutes of MPEG-4 encoded moving images (384 kbps), 400 4-megapixel digital still images in normal mode, or 680 minutes of AAC- or MP3-encoded digital music data in normal mode. The new memory card also incorporates copyright protection that complies with the SDMI (Secure Digital Music Initiative) standard.

The company will also be displaying conceptual models of SD Memory Card product applications at CEATEC JAPAN 2001, such as 1) an SD video recorder and player with 2-inch diagonal LCD panel, 2) an SD multimedia terminal, and 3) an SD portable printer.

In response to the increasing market need for large volume data storage applications in the future, over 300 SD Association member companies already support the SD Memory Card. These companies represent a broad spectrum of hardware, software, and content related industries, including music, movies, electronics, PCs, telecommunications, photographic equipment, and automobiles. The Matsushita Electric group has already introduced and released 47 different SD card products in 19 categories, and is making further efforts to realize larger capacity and more affordable SD Memory Cards.