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Panasonic Updates SD Media Offerings

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June 8, 2006 – Panasonic revealed new SD memory card offerings today with the announcements of a 4 GB card and a new line of SD cards carrying the Class 2 designation from the SD Card Association. The company cited the growing popularity of video recording as a reason to upgrade its memory card capacity and classification. The new SD cards will go on sale in August.

The Panasonic 4 GB SDHC card will be able to transfer data at speeds of 5 MB per second, which is compliant with the Class 2 specification. The high-capacity card will not be able to function in all cameras. "Due to the transition to the new specification, the SDHC memory card can be used only in SDHC host devices, which support the SDHC memory card format," today’s press release stated. "It cannot be used in other, non-SDHC host devices."

Standard SD cards can be used in the SDHC host devices though. To keep consumers from mixing up the SDHC cards from the SD cards, Panasonic redesigned its high capacity cards to look different. The 4 GB card will be emblazoned with the SDHC logo and will come in a black and silver label. The other Class 2 cards will come in the following sizes: 256 MB, 512 MB, 1 GB, and 2 GB.

The SD Card Association released its classification system in January at the Consumer Electronics Show. It is meant to standardize the transfer speeds rather than relying on individual manufacturers to create their own ratings. The association created a new specification, called SDHC for its high capacity, for cards with 2-32 GB of memory.

"Consumers are demanding new capabilities of their digital devices," said Paul Reinhart, executive director of the SD Card Association, in a January 4 press release announcing the new classification system. "The new SDHC card specification will allow manufacturers to develop a new world of digital devices with the advanced features and functions consumers are clamoring for."

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