We live complex times when it comes to pendrives’ capacity. In part, thanks to manufacturers’ efforts to miniaturize their devices even further, which translates into greater data storage capacity in a smaller and smaller space. A race to which Sandisk has joined the big door with its new prototype of no less than 4 TB capacity, which has been presented at the last CES, held in January 2019. Let us know more about this product and how We have come here.
A little history
The history of the pendrives starts with the new century, since it was in the year 2000 when these devices began to be seen by the market. At that time the available capacities were quite small, ranging from 8 to 64 MBs of the larger capacity models. At least these were the capabilities offered by the Israeli company M-Systems, one of the first to launch on the market with IBM or TrekTechnology. A capacity that would reach 256 MBs in the most advanced models of the manufacturer. Something scarce but that by those dates was adjusted to what a user could need.
Subsequently, the arrival of the USB 2.0 protocol, with its own energy load and its improved transfer speed, would allow the capacity to be improved up to 512 Mbps. However, we would have to wait until 2010 for Imation to launch its new line of pendrives with capacities of up to 32 GB. This third generation, to which these devices belong, is what we currently have in the market and allows us to access devices with up to 256 GB of capacity without the prices going too high.
The new ultra pendrives
If we continue to advance in capacity, beyond those 256 GB, we will see that there is not much to choose from. This capacity is what is currently the roof of these devices, although it is true that there is a model that exceeds that capacity. Thus, finding 512GB drives is also easy, although prices already skyrocket against 256GB models and lower capacity.
But where the price goes off at all is in the 1 and 2 TB models. Among others because we talk about a newcomer technology and little popular among users, which generally do not need so much storage capacity. In this context we find products like the Kingston DataTraveler Ultimate GT.
This brand was the first to make the leap to this large capacity segment, offering pendrives with the two capacities mentioned above. The main problem of these pendrives is their price, of 676 euros for the 1 TB model and about 1,250 euros for the 2TB model. As we said, it is not cheap.
By the way, since we talk about prices and products it is important to keep in mind that in places like Amazon there are many false pendrives that claim to have a 1 TB capacity and a price that does not reach 50 euros. Products that we must avoid at all costs because they are nothing more than gross imitations of a capacity of about 32 or 64 GB at most.
The creation of Sandisk
In this context comes this novelty that Sandisk has recently presented. This prototype, which for now has no name, has similar to those of a lighter and includes a total capacity to store up to 4 TB of data inside. A model that maintains the high speed of USB 3.0 devices, so you won’t have to worry about achieving high performance when performing massive data transfer operations.
Another novelty that includes this model is to have a type C port, which varies from the conventional USB type port that we find in these devices, this being a trend that seems to be imposed among users. Anyway, as we have said, this product is nothing more than a prototype, so that the device has no price nor a future release date. Therefore, there is not much more we can say about this model.
Something that is also not strange, since the brand has not yet launched its best 1 TB pendrive that I present at the CES of the year 2018, so the company is taking things easy in this regard. This contrasts with the advances that are occurring in other similar devices of this manufacturer, such as its external hard drive SSD Extreme Pro Portable SSD.
Is there really a market?
This half decaffeinated presentation and the delays in the launch of the 1TB model, which we have already mentioned, lead us to think if all this is really casual or there is another cause behind.
Let’s think a little about what we have in the market. If we want to store data in large quantities, in portable units of low weight or size we can resort to a 2 TB pendrive that costs 1250 euros … or use an external SSD disk of that same capacity, which has something more size but a Price of only 750 euros. If we reduce the capacity to 1 TB we have a pendrive of 600 euros cost … or SSD hard drives like the aforementioned Sandisk Extreme for just 210 euros and with the size of a credit card.
Thus, we speak of a segment of the market where there are alternatives at reasonable prices compared to what the pendrives offer us and in which the manufacturers have not just launched. This last aspect is key so that the pendrives of greater capacity lower of price. However, without the clear commitment of the manufacturers it is difficult for this drop to occur.
So we are in a closed circle that, unless manufacturers break the price aspect to help familiarize the technology, can cause these models to not go beyond being mere prototypes or point launches. We will see what happens in this near future with these pendrives of maximum capacity.