By Eric Griffith
January 10, 2003
Flash data storage provider SanDisk of Sunnyvale, CA, is joining the world of 802.11b networking with a twist. In its new wireless network interface cards, the Connect line, some will include Flash memory along with connectivity. The Connect products will consist of four products.
The include a Compact Flash (CF) 802.11 card and a Secure Digital Input Output (SD) 802.11b card. It’s based on the SyChip WLAN6060SD NIC design. Each will cost $99.95 MSRP. The CF card is ready now; the SD card will ship in March. The Connect cards with Flash memory will be a wireless 128MB CF card (eventually going to 256MB in the middle of the year) for $129.94 will available in March and a 256MB SD Card with Wi-Fi for $149.95 is due in the middle of the year.
The SD Wi-Fi cards will all support devices running the Palm OS 4.x or higher. Socket Communications of Newark, CA, has also announced plans to sell an SD Wi-Fi card based on the WLAN6060SD card design by the end of the first quarter of 2003. According to Sychip, the card is still in testing, though Socket and Sychip are both demonstrating the units this week at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas. Original equipment manufacturers (OEMS) (define) can get reference designs from Sychip for the card complete with driver suite for Windows CE/2000/XP and Palm OS 4.x or higher. Sychip says that more than 10 handheld devices from major OEMs will support the SD Wi-Fi card this year. The general form factor of an SD card is about the size of a postage stamp — 32 x 24 x 2.1 millimeters. SD slots are generally found in personal digital assistants (PDAs)(define) such as the Palm. Most Pocket PC devices come with a CF slot — CF cards are slightly larger at 43 x 36 x 3.3 mm.