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​SanDisk shows off 1-terabyte flash memory card

The Extreme Pro SDXC card prototype isn't on sale yet but it could appeal to videographers shooting a lot of high-resolution 4K video.

SanDisk's 1TB SDXC flash memory card prototype​ at Photokina.
SanDisk's 1TB SDXC flash memory card prototype at the Photokina show.

If you're the type who does a full day's shooting in 4K video with an action cam, drone or SLR, you'll appreciate SanDisk's announcement Tuesday that it's working on an SD memory card with a whopping 1 terabyte of storage capacity.

That's more storage space than flash memory-based laptops come with and four times that of a top-end iPhone 7, all in a package a sixth the size of a credit card.

The company showed the SDXC prototype at the Photokina show for photography enthusiasts and said it'll eventually sell the card as a product. It wouldn't yet say when or at what price, though.

Beware that 4K video, with resolution of at least 3840x2160 pixels, really sucks up the data -- in some cases, more than 3.5GB per minute at a normal rate of 30 frames per second. And 4K video is increasingly popular not just because 4K TV prices are dropping but because video producers like the latitude and sharpness the extra pixels afford when they're creating ordinary 1080p video.

Often, high-capacity cards don't have top speeds when reading and writing data, and for 4K video, cards need to be able to keep up with a fierce data rate. SanDisk wouldn't share details for its prototype, but the card carries the Extreme Pro brand and UHS-I rating that denotes high performance suitable for 4K video. The Western Digital subsidiary's current 512GB Extreme Pro can write data at speeds up to 95 megabytes per second.