Size Does Matter When It Comes To SD Cards
The SD card first burst onto the scene in 1999, with cards boasting storage capacities up to 64 MB hitting store shelves in the first quarter of 2000. Over the years, sizes slowly crept up as our thirst for more storage continued to grow. Fast forward to today, and the biggest microSD cards pack up to a whopping 1 TB into a package smaller than the average postage stamp.
However, getting to this point has required many subtle changes over the years. This can cause havoc for users trying to use the latest cards in older devices. To find out why, we need to take a look under the hood at how SD cards deal with storage capacity.
Current cards are available up to 1 TB, close to maxing out the SDXC specification. When the spec was announced 11 years ago, Wired reported that 2 TB cards were “coming soon”, which in hindsight may have been jumping the gun a bit. Regardless, the next standard, SDUC, will support cards up to 128 TB in size. It’s highly likely that another break in compatibility will be required, as the current capacity registers in the SDXC spec are already maxed out. We may not find out until the specification is made available to the wider public in coming years.