|SanDisk Introduces World's First Cards Combining Flash Memory and Wireless Communications|
New SanDisk CompactFlash and SD Connect Product Line
Includes Single Function Cards With Wi-Fi Connectivity
LAS VEGAS, NV, JAN. 9, 2003 - SanDisk Corporation (NASDAQ:SNDK) today
introduced a line of wireless Wi-Fi (802.11b) cards with the world's first
card products to include both memory and wireless communications technology.
The new SanDisk Connect‘ product line was introduced at a press conference
at the Consumer Electronics Show where SanDisk is demonstrating products in
Central Hall, booth 7949.
The announcement marks SanDisk's entry into the wireless communications
market and comes at a time when Wi-Fi, also known as WLAN for wireless local
area networks, is emerging as the main worldwide wireless standard. Market
watchers at Gartner Inc. report that some two million mobile surfers in
North America already use Wi-Fi, and it expects that number to double by
The Connect product line includes four products - dual-function 128 megabyte
(MB) CompactFlash“ (CF) and 256MB SD cards that combine Wi-Fi and flash
memory as well as single-function CF and SD cards with Wi-Fi connectivity.
SanDisk plans to add 256MB cards to the CF Connect product line by the
middle of 2003.
Nelson Chan, SanDisk senior vice president and general manager of SanDisk's
retail business unit, said, "Access points that allow mobile computer users
to wirelessly connect to their email and the Internet are rapidly being
deployed around the world - from hotels, airports and universities to cafes,
coffee shops and corporate campuses. With these new SanDisk Connect cards,
people on the go can quickly transmit and receive data, images and music
from any of those thousands of locations."
He added, "The cards bring wireless connectivity to a host of new products
including handheld and notebook computers, digital cameras and MP3 players.
By combining both flash memory and wireless communications in one card,
people going on a business or pleasure trip can load up the card with family
pictures, data files, spread sheets and Power Point presentations and have
everything they need, plus wireless connectivity, on one card. This is
becoming quite important to consumers and business users because many
handheld and notebook computers have only one card slot and users are forced
to decide between using the slot for connectivity or for storage. These
SanDisk Connect cards solve that problem."
The new Connect cards also allow users to download files to their
mobile computers while connected to their email or the Internet. Today,
computer owners sometimes cannot download files to their systems because the
main memory in the computer is already full. With a Connect card plugged in,
they can download their files to that cards if main memory is no longer
Will Strauss, president of Forward Concepts, a Phoenix-based market research
firm, said, "It's clear that the WLAN market growth is truly phenomenal,
with 802.11 network interface card shipments growing over 100 percent in
2002 to 13.2 million from 6.4 million in 2001. We forecast that 138.7
million of these network interface cards will ship in 2006 for a compound
annual growth rate of 85 percent from 2001. The mobility that WLAN provides
ties in well with the compelling need for portable data storage, which makes
the SanDisk Connect products very compelling."
SanDisk expects that consumers will use the new Connect combination cards in
various ways. For example, several camera manufacturers are exploring the
development of new digital cameras (with single card slots) that would
enable photographers to use a Connect dual-function card to take pictures
and then use wireless connectivity to send the images to friends or business
"SanDisk's introduction of a dual-function SDIO card combining Wi-Fi with
flash memory opens new expansion options for customers using SDIO Now!
enabled devices," said Kent Hellebust, senior vice president, marketing and
product management, BSQUARE Corp. "With Microsoft and leading OEM's adopting
SDIO Now! As the industry standard for PocketPC-based IO expansion,
SanDisk's SDIO cards are a welcome addition to the growing peripheral
SanDisk's SD Wi-Fi cards also will support devices with Palm's OS 4x and
higher operating systems.
Combining flash memory and Wi-Fi in one card also represents a cost savings
to consumers because if the cards were bought separately, they would cost
Devices enabled with Wi-Fi cards, such as SanDisk's Connect cards, can
transmit and receive data at speeds up to 11Mbps (megabits per second) at a
realistic range of up to 300 feet from the nearest access point. SanDisk's
Wi-Fi cards have one of the fastest data transfer rates in the industry.
SanDisk's new Connect cards have been designed with low power consumption to
minimize battery drain, a key consideration for PDA and notebook users. The
CF Connect line can be used in multiple devices because they support both
WinCE PDAs and Windows laptops and notebooks. The cards also have been
simplified for easy installation, and security encryption keys are included
with the products.
The Wi-Fi (802.11b) CF and SD Connect cards have a suggested retail price of
$99.95. The dual-function CF cards with 128MB of capacity will be priced at
$129.95 while the dual-function 256MB SD cards will be priced at $149.95.
The CF Wi-Fi card is available now, the CF dual-function card and the SD
Wi-Fi card will be available in March and the SD dual-function card is
expected to ship at mid-year. The CF pricing includes a PC card adapter for
notebook and laptop owners. SanDisk Connect cards will be sold in many of
the 50,000 retail stores worldwide where SanDisk branded products are sold.
SanDisk, the world's largest supplier of flash data storage
products, designs, manufactures and markets industry-standard, solid-state
data, digital imaging and audio storage products using its patented, high
density flash memory and controller technology. SanDisk is based in
The matters discussed in this news release contain forward looking
statements that are subject to certain risks and uncertainties as described
under the caption, "Factors That May Affect Future Results" in the company's
annual report on Form 10-K-A and quarterly reports on Form 10-Q, filed with
the Securities and Exchange Commission. The companies assume no obligation
to update the information in this release.
SanDisk's web site/home page address: http://www.sandisk.com
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