(Nikkei BP Group)
(No.1 High-Tech News Site in Japanese)
| Sony to Market Chewing-Gum-Size Flash Memory Modules
August 4, 1998 (TOKYO) -- Sony Corp. said it will start marketing the
Memory Stick, a small-size flash memory module that will hit the market
on Sept. 10.
|It looks like a stick of gum, measures
21.5mm high x 50mm wide x 2.8mm deep and weighs 4g. Its connector is
constructed to prevent users from touching it directly while ensuring
The model MSA-4A with an 4MB memory capacity and will be priced at 3,300
yen (US$20). The MSA-8A with 8MB memory is 4,400 yen (US$30). The total
monthly production will amount to 20,000 modules at first.
Along with the Memory Stick, Sony will sell the MSAKIT-PC4A, a PC card
kit, for 11,000 yen (US$76), including a PC-card adapter that enables
the module to be installed in a PC card slot.
Data are transferred using the company's proprietary protocol through
a serial interface. It has a maximum writing speed of 1.5MB per second
and a reading speed of 2.45MB per second.
Sony plans to release Memory Stick models with larger storage capacities
in the future. These models can be used for record/playback of multimedia
data such as music. Therefore, the company said it would install copy-protection
functions in them.
Personal computers, digital cameras, telephones, car-navigation systems,
voice recorders and headphone stereo players were introduced as potential
markets for the Memory Stick in a promotion video exhibited at a Sony
press conference. The company will commercialize these multimedia products
using the Memory Stick by the end of 1999.
Sony will promote Memory Stick to the extent that it eventually will
be known commonly in the industry by its initials, MS, within two or
three years, said Yutaka Nakagawa, managing director of the company.
Sony showcased a digital still camera with a Memory Stick module directly
installed in it, although neither its detailed specifications nor shipping
schedule was released.
(BizTech Editorial Dept.)