June 5, 2008 Ultra Low-Cost PCs (ULCPC) were originally developed as low-cost computing solutions for school children in developing nations, but the diminutive, inexpensive devices have caught on with adults, and now manufacturers are rolling out devices that are designed for general consumer use. Recognizing this SanDisk has introduced a line of flash memory-based solid-state drives (SSDs) that are designed for this emerging new category of ULCPCs or “netbooks”. The new SanDisk pSSD (Parallel ATA solid state drive) eliminates the need for a hard disk drive and can store both the operating system and application data for these new devices.

Built using SanDisk’s Multi-Level Cell (MLC) and Single-Level Cell (SLC) flash memory, the new SSD modules will be available in 4, 8 and 16GB capacities, with a streaming read speed of 39 megabytes per second (MB/s) and a streaming write performance of 17MB/s. The main advantages of flash-based SSDs including reliability, power consumption, form factor and cost make them well suited to ULCPCs, which are smaller than a conventional notebook computer and let people browse the Internet on the go, with a user interface that replicates that of larger PCs.

The SanDisk pSSD solid state drives, which support both Linux and Windows XP operating systems, are being shown at Computex Taipei and are expected to be available starting in August.