by Lyle Smith

WD Launches New Storage Solutions Including World's First microSD With A1 Specifications

WD has announced several new storage solutions during this year’s CES/Pepcom, including the 256GB SanDisk Extreme PRO USB 3.1 SSD. Designed for creative professionals, tech enthusiasts, and those who work with large files, the new SSD is the company’s fastest, high-capacity USB flash drive yet. Also announced is the 256GB SanDisk Ultra microSDXC, the world’s first microSD card that meets the Application Performance Class 1 (A1) requirements from the latest SD Association’s SD 5.1 specifications. And lastly is the WD Black PCIe SSD, the first WD-branded client PCIe solid state drive. 

SanDisk Extreme PRO USB 3.1 SSD

The new SanDisk Extreme PRO USB 3.1 SSD is quoted to reach upwards of 420MB/s in reads and 380MB/s in writes and features a modern-looking, yet durable, metal casing with a convenient retractable connector.

In addition, SanDisk’s SSD flash drive is available in capacities up to 256GB and includes the company’s SecureAccess software, providing 128-bit file encryption and password protection. The SanDisk Extreme PRO is also backed by a limited lifetime warranty for an added peace of mind.

SanDisk Ultra microSDXCTM UHS-I card

The 256GB SanDisk Ultra microSD card is capable of storing upwards of 24 hours of Full HD video and features transfer rates up to 95MB/s. Moreover, the SanDisk Ultra microSD is specced to deliver random IOPS speeds of 1,500 read and 500 write. SanDisk indicates that its A1 performance allows for the speedy launch of apps and process of accompanying tasks, such as audio, graphics, saved profiles and in-app permissions.

The microSD card is also compatible with the company’s free SanDisk Memory Zone app for Android (available through the Google Play Store), which allows users to effectively manage and back up content on their device.


The WD Black PCIe SSD is a PCIe Gen3 x4 NVMe-based SSD available in a single-sided M.2 2280 form factor. The new WD drive is quoted at up to 2,050MB/s and 800MB/s in sequential read and write speeds, respectively, and features a 5-year limited warranty and WD F.I.T. Lab certification for compatibility with leading platforms. These performance numbers make it ideal storage solution for performance-driven PCs and will satisfy demanding gaming requirements and VR-focused applications when coupled with a current-generation GPU.

 The new WD SSD also offers an industry-leading 1.75M hours MTTF and WD Functional Integrity Testing (F.I.T.) Lab certification and has been designed with thermal and power management algorithms beyond the NVMe specification. This helps to promote consistent performance and efficient power consumption. The WD Black PCIe SSDs comes bundled with the company’s free, downloadable WD SSD Dashboard software, allowing for continuous performance, capacity monitoring, and seamless firmware updates. The WD Black PCIe SSD comes in capacities of 256GB and 512GB.

Pricing and Availability

The 256GB SanDisk Extreme PRO USB 3.1 SSD is slated for a January 2017 release on and Best Buy for $179.99.

The 256GB SanDisk Ultra microSD card will be available worldwide in January 2017 as well and is expected to go for roughly $199.99.

WD Black PCIe SSDs will be priced at $109.00 (256GB) and $199.99 (512GB) with an expected release date during the first half of 2017.

256GB SanDisk Ultra microSDXC UHS-I card, Premium Edition

256GB SanDisk Extreme PRO USB 3.1 Solid State Flash Drive

WD Black PCIe solid state drives 

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