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  • Memory Cards Overview
  • Full Article

Memory is an essential component of any sophisticated electronic device. Sufficient memory allows not only for the storage of permanent files like contacts, photos, music, and video, but for the smooth and timely operation of the device's software. As mobile phones have evolved to incorporate the features of a host of other devices, their need for memory has, in turn, grown substantially. Advances in technology have similarly led to increasingly compact, efficient memory cards.

Replacing your phone's memory card is often an easy, inexpensive way of vastly increasing storage capacity. Whether you love taking photos or videos at every opportune moment, have a massive collection of mp3s, or simply never want to worry about choosing between files, a new, higher capacity memory card is often the simplest, most effective solution.

The vast majority of consumer electronics employ memory cards of the Secure Digital (SD) format. SD cards come in three sizes—standard, mini, and micro—and are further broken down by functionality: Standard Capacity (SDSC), High-Capacity (SDHC), eXtended-Capacity (SDXC), and Input/Output (SDIO). New devices tend to accept older iterations of SD cards, but old devices often don't accept newer models, so be sure to consult your device's manual and specifications before purchasing a new card.

Memory is an essential component of any sophisticated electronic device. Sufficient memory allows not only for the storage of permanent files like contacts, photos, music, and video, but for the smooth and timely operation of the device's software. As mobile phones have evolved to incorporate the features of a host of other devices, their need for memory has, in turn, grown substantially. Advances in technology have similarly led to increasingly compact, efficient memory cards.

Replacing a memory card:

Replacing your phone's memory card is often an easy, inexpensive way of vastly increasing storage capacity. Whether you love taking photos or videos at every opportune moment, have a massive collection of mp3s, or simply never want to worry about choosing between files, a new, higher capacity memory card is often the simplest, most effective solution.

Not all cell phones readily accept changes in memory, and those that do don't always have a streamlined mechanism for installation. That being said, far and away the most common memory cards used in consumer electronics are replaceable Secure Digital (SD) cards. SD is used by over 400 brands in thousands of models, in products ranging from cameras and laptops, to video game consoles, mp3 players, and phones.

SD cards are broken down into four speed class ratings: Class 2, Class 4, Class, and Class 10. Each numerical designation corresponds to the card’s Read/Write speed. A Class 2 card, for example, transfers 2 megabytes per second, a Class 4 transfers 4 MB, and so on. Transfer speed is important for a variety of reasons, but it’s a particularly pressing matter in instances of live recording; a camcorder (or video equipped smartphone), for example, needs to write image data at a certain speed, lest the recording lose fidelity. Thankfully, most contemporary devices will alert the user if the card inserted falls below its speed requirements.

SD cards come in three sizes—standard, mini, and micro—and are further broken down into four different functions: Standard Capacity (SDSC), High-Capacity (SDHC), eXtended-Capacity (SDXC), and Input/Output (SDIO). New devices tend to accept older iterations of SD cards, but old devices will rarely accept newer models. SD adapters are also readily available, which can eliminate compatibility issues based on SD family and size. Nonetheless, it's always best to consult your device's manual and specifications before purchasing a new card.

Memory Card Readers:

For those who perhaps own a host of memory cards, or who don't have an easy way of connecting their phone to a computer, Memory Card Readers provide a handy way of accessing a card's contents. Much like other portable USB memory devices (or flash drives), readers are compact and attach easily to your computer's USB port. Simply insert your SD card, plug the reader in, and remove, edit, or add files with ease.

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