M-Systems to Bring Additional Storage to Palm OS Devices

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PalmSource has announced an agreement that will bring M-Systems’ high-capacity, non-volatile memory Storage technologies to future Palm OS handhelds.

As handhelds and smart phones running the Palm OS continue to expand into multimedia, wireless, and the enterprise, higher-capacity storage systems become increasingly important. M-Systems will give licensees of this operating system pre-integrated support for its mobile DiskOnChip storage system.

“M-Systems’ expertise in memory-storage technology will enable Palm OS licensees to deliver a wide range of Palm Powered mobile devices with cost effective memory management solutions needed to efficiently store a variety of multimedia formats,” said Larry Slotnick, chief product officer for PalmSource.

Currently, the Palm OS severely limits the types of files that can be stored in RAM, which means most multimedia files have to be stored on removable memory cards. Handhelds with DiskOnChip will have the equivalent of an internal memory card that won’t have this limitation.

This will be less significant in the future as devices running Palm OS 6, expected next year, will be able to store any type of file in RAM. However, any handheld can be improved by large amounts of storage that isn’t erased if the device’s batteries are completely drained.

More About DiskOnChip

Based on NAND and Multi-Level Cell (MLC) NAND technologies and a built-in ultra thin controller, mobile DiskOnChip provides high memory system performance, enables reliable storage, saves on power consumption, and reduces overall system cost. It also guarantees that users never lose their data even after power failure.

The latest version of mobile DiskOnChip offers up to 1 GB of storage on a chip that is just 0.35 by 0.47 by .055 inches (9x12x1.4mm). It reads data at 5 MB/sec and writes it at 1.1 MB/sec. When active, it uses 10 millamps, though it can go into deep power down, when it uses 10 microamps.

Tim Bajarin, analyst for Creative Strategies, said, “M-Systems’ expertise in flash storage technologies allows PalmSource to enhance its offerings to include reliable internal data Storage at increased capacities — a key component to new Palm Powered devices.”

As part of this agreement, M-Systems has joined the Palm OS Ready Program, in which component providers work with PalmSource to ensure their products are ready to be included in Palm OS handhelds and smart phones. Other members of this program include ATI, MediaQ, Motorola, Samsung and Texas Instruments

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