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The following information is true and accurate at the time of publication.
January 08, 2009

SANDISK AND SONY TO EXPAND "MEMORY STICK PRO" AND "MEMORY STICK MICRO" FORMATS

Achieving 2-Terabyte Maximum Storage Capacity and 60MB/s Interface Speed, Respectively

SanDisk Corporation
Sony Corporation

        SanDisk Corporation (NASDAQ: SNDK) and Sony Corporation today announced the joint development of two expanded formats that will shape the flash memory landscape for years to come. "Memory Stick format for Extended High Capacity (Tentative name)" expands the "Memory Stick PRO" format series to achieve a maximum storage capacity of 2-terabytes (TB)*1, while the "Memory Stick HG Micro" format enables a maximum data-transfer speed of 60 megabytes per second (MB/s)*2, making it one of the fastest-smallest memory card formats to date. Format licensing corresponding to the "Memory Stick format for Extended High Capacity" and the "Memory Stick HG Micro" is scheduled to start in 2009.
< Memory Stick PRO format series > < Memory Stick format series for extended high capacity >
Memory Stick PRO
Memory Stick PRO HG
Memory Stick Micro (M2)
Memory Stick HG Micro
Expanded format for Memory Stick PRO
Expanded format for Memory Stick PRO-HG
Expanded format for Memory Stick Micro
Expanded format for Memory Stick HG Micro

*Underlined are the expanded formats that we announced today.


"Memory Stick Format Series for Extended High Capacity"

        The demand for high-capacity memory cards capable of storing high-resolution pictures and videos is increasing as the image quality of high-definition digital still cameras, DSLR cameras, and camcorders continues to evolve. The new "Memory Stick Format for Extended High Capacity" format hopes to meet this demand by enabling the recording of up to 2TB of data, which is 60 times more storage capacity than the "Memory Stick PRO" format's 32-gigabyte (GB)*3 capacity limit.

        By this format expansion, "Memory Stick PRO Format for Extended High Capacity" shatters the terabyte mark for data storage, opening the door for wider applications. This new format is scheduled to continue to support the "MagicGate" copyright protection technology as well as the "Access Control Function"*4.

"Memory Stick HG Micro"

        In addition, SanDisk and Sony today announced the joint development of "Memory Stick HG Micro", a format expanded from "Memory Stick Micro" (M2). This new format adopts an enhanced 8-bit parallel interface and features an increased interface clock frequency of 60 mega hertz (MHz), enabling 60MB/s (480 Mbps in theoretical value) maximum data transfer speed. This is three times faster than the conventional serial 4-bit parallel interface and 40MHz interface clock frequency adopted in the "Memory Stick Micro", offering data-transfer speeds of the "Memory Stick PRO-HG" on a micro-size memory card.

        Since the September 1998 market introduction of the "Memory Stick," cumulative shipments of media is estimated to surpass 500 million units*5 in 2009. SanDisk and Sony will continue to work toward enhanced usability of the "Memory Stick" to respond to the market needs for larger and faster memory cards.
"SanDisk and Sony share a long collaborative history of developing products and technologies that enhance user experience and provide direct benefit to consumers," said Yoram Cedar, executive vice president, OEM and corporate engineering, SanDisk. "Both companies have enjoyed great successes with the Memory Stick PRO format in the past, and we are sure that the expansion of these formats to improve capacity and performance will be quite compelling. This technology provides a framework for us to develop products that will significantly impact mobile and consumer electronics markets."
Hidenosuke Kanai, President of Electronic Devices Business Group of Sony Corporation, said, "Sony has successfully collaborated with SanDisk Corporation in developing and promoting the "Memory Stick" formats such as the "Memory Stick PRO" format in 2003, the "Memory Stick Micro" format for mobile products in 2005 and "Memory Stick PRO-HG" format in 2006. Today, we are happy to announce the latest result of the joint development on the "Memory Stick" format to offer a memory card with unprecedented high capacity. Through the introduction of these new formats, Sony hopes that the "Memory Stick" will open up new possibilities and greatly expand its applications of flash memory cards."

Specification Chart *6, *7

 
Memory Stick PRO
Format series
Memory Stick format series
for extended high capacity
 
Duo size
Memory Stick PRO
Expanded format for
Memory Stick PRO
 
Capacity up to 32GB greater than 32GB, up to 2TB
Dimension 31x20x1.6mm
Connecter pin 10 pins
I/F 4bit parallel, serial
I/F data transfer rate Max. 20MB/s (4bit parallel transfer)
 
Memory Stick PRO-HG
Expanded format for
Memory Stick PRO-HG
Capacity up to 32GB greater than 32GB, up to 2TB
Dimension 31x20x1.6mm
Connecter pin 14 pins
I/F 8bit parallel, 4bit parallel, serial
I/F data transfer rate Max. 60MB/s (8bit parallel transfer)
Max. 20MB/s (4bit parallel transfer)
Micro size
Memory Stick Micro
Expanded format for
Memory Stick Micro
 
Capacity up to 32GB greater than 32GB, up to 2TB
Dimension 14x12.5x1.2mm
Connecter pin 11 pins
I/F 4bit parallel, serial
I/F data transfer rate Max. 20MB/s (4bit parallel transfer)
 
Memory Stick HG Micro
Expanded format for
Memory Stick HG Micro
Capacity up to 32GB greater than 32GB, up to 2TB
Dimension 14x12.5x1.2mm
Connecter pin 20 pins
I/F 8bit parallel, 4bit parallel, serial
I/F data transfer rate Max. 60MB/s (8bit parallel transfer)
Max. 20MB/s (4bit parallel transfer)

About SanDisk:

SanDisk Corporation, the inventor and world's largest supplier of flash storage cards, is a global leader in flash memory – from research, manufacturing and product design to consumer branding and retail distribution. SanDisk's product portfolio includes flash memory cards for mobile phones, digital cameras and camcorders; digital audio/video players; USB flash drives for consumers and the enterprise; embedded memory for mobile devices; and solid state drives for computers. SanDisk is a Silicon Valley-based S&P 500 company, with more than half its sales outside the United States.


About Sony Corporation:

Sony Corporation is a leading manufacturer of audio, video, game, communications, key device and information technology products for the consumer and professional markets. With its music, pictures, computer entertainment and on-line businesses, Sony is uniquely positioned to be the leading electronics and entertainment company in the world. Sony recorded consolidated annual sales of approximately $88 billion for the fiscal year ended March 31, 2008. Sony Global Web Site: http://www.sony.net/


*1:  1 terabyte (TB) = 1 trillion bytes
*2:  1 megabyte (MB) = 1 million bytes
*3:  1 gigabyte (GB) = 1 billion bytes
*4:  In order to use this, host devices also need to implement the Access Control Function.
*5:  The cumulative number includes Memory Stick, Memory Stick Duo, Memory Stick PRO, Memory Stick PRO Duo and Memory Stick PRO Micro media.
*6:  Subject to change.
*7:  Speeds are based on internal testing and/or theoretical maximums. Performance may vary based upon host device.
   
***:  All trade names are either registered trademarks or trademarks of their respective holders.

SanDisk and the SanDisk logo are trademarks of SanDisk Corporation, registered in the United States and other countries. Other brand names mentioned herein are for identification purposes only and may be the trademarks of their respective holder (s).

This press release contains certain forward-looking statements, including expectations for new product introductions, specifications, applications, markets, pricing, customer acceptance and customers that are based on our current expectations and involve numerous risks and uncertainties that may cause these forward-looking statements to be inaccurate. Risks that may cause these forward-looking statements to be inaccurate include among others: market demand for our products may grow more slowly than our expectations or there may be a slower adoption rate for these products in new markets that we are targeting, and the other risks detailed from time-to-time under the caption "Risk Factors" and elsewhere in Securities and Exchange Commission filings and reports, including, but not limited to, Form 6-K, Form 10-K, Form 10-Q and Form 20-F. We do not intend to update the information contained in this press release.





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