Lexar unveils new USB flash drive

Penny-size FlashCard uses new form factor being proposed as open and free industry standard. Photo: Lexar's penny-size FlashCard

Lexar Media on Monday introduced a USB flash drive about the size of a penny that it hopes will bring next-generation storage, connectivity and utility products to a range of computing and consumer electronics devices.

The new USB card form factor is based on the USB Type A connector as outlined in the Universal Serial Bus specification.

The drive, which fits into a standard USB type A socket, is 12-millimeters wide, 4.5mm high and 31.75mm long. The sturdy metal housing is intended to make the USB card suitable for use in a range of environments.

Thanks to its smaller size, the USB flash drive can be used in digital cameras and handheld computers, in addition to normal PCs and consumer electronics devices, the company said.

"This new form factor enables the use of USB flash drives beyond computing applications, realizing the dream of connecting the worlds of computing, consumer and mobile applications through a universal USB FlashCard," Steffen Hellmold, general manager of OEM products at Lexar, said in a release.

The Fremont, Calif.-based company has plans to release full-speed versions of its USB FlashCard in 16-megabyte, 32MB and 64MB capacities, as well as high-speed versions in 64MB, 128MB, 256MB, 512MB and 1-gigabyte capacities with a 60MB-per-second interface speed in 2005. Pricing was not released.

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