Andy McCasky and Esbjorn Larsen spoke to Alisa Hicks from the SD Card Association, a standards body for SD cards. They make sure that SD cards work in all devices. SD stands for secure-digital. The cards are created with copyrights protection (CPRM) installed. So that content providers are willing to allow their creations on the cards. Right now the cards works with standard definition videos only, but they are working on a high-def version. The association represent over 1100 members, including camera makers, card makers, card readers and others. Two years ago they increased the storage capacity of the cards up to 32 GB. At that time they said they were working on increasing the speed of transfer.
At CES 2011 the association announced the second speed increase (since increasing the capacity) up to 312 mb per sec. The speed classes guarantee a minimum write speed, not the maximum speed. If you have a class 10 card, then the minimum write speed is 10 mb per second for that card, but it could be higher. The best way to find what card is best for a device is to look at the manual. The SD Association doesn’t issue the license for the cards that is done by a different group. The association is currently working on an SD format for digital books.
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