The SD Association has announced a new card specification that should increase maximum storage on SD cards to 128 terabytes and provide much faster data transfer speeds of 985 megabytes per second.
Right now the maximum storage space on an SD card is 2TB, and that limit was promised as far back as 2009, but still hasn’t been reached. In 2016, SanDisk unveiled a prototype 1 terabyte SD card that would make it the biggest in the world, but it’s still not available to purchase. At the time, SanDisk said that the advancement was necessary to match ever-increasing data-heavy formats like 4K video and VR. However, creating SD cards with massive amounts of storage is cost-prohibitive. SanDisk’s 512GB SD card used to cost $800, and though it’s dropped in price, is still priced around $300.
The new faster speeds, called SD Express, will come to all types of cards, but the high storage is a new thing called an SD Ultra Capacity (SDUC) card. Given how slow the progress has been toward 2TB cards, there’s no telling how long it’ll take before manufacturers hit the higher figures that SDUC allows, but perhaps the increased storage capacity and shift to increasingly higher-resolution video will give companies more reason to invest.