Intel Unveils New Line of Mini-SSDs for Laptops, Tablets

The 310 Series drives are about one-eighth the size of a standard Intel X25 NAND flash SSD, yet they can hold up to 80GB of data.

Intel on Dec. 29 launched a new set of mini-sized solid-state drives for dual-drive notebooks, tablet PCs and enbedded applications that the company claims provide performance as high as its larger SSDs.
The 310 Series drives are sized at a mere 51mm-by-30mm and 5mm thick, about one-eighth the size of a current Intel 2.5-inch X25 flash SSD, yet they can hold up to 80GB of data.
The new drives contain 34-nanometer Intel NAND flash memory chips and are available in an m-SATA form factor in 40GB and 80GB capacities. The 310 Series also support SATA connectivity over a PCI Express (PCIe) mini-connector for on-board storage in single-drive netbooks, tablets or handheld devices.
Intel Director of Solid-State Products Marketing Troy Winslow told eWEEK that when paired with a high-capacity hard disk drive in a dual-drive laptop or desktop PC, the 310 SSDs markedly improve overall system speed by about 60 percent, according to benchmarks.
"These really help accelerate boot time and access to frequently used applications or files," Winslow said.
One of the first deployments for the 310 Series SSDs is by DRS Technologies for a new ARMOR communications tablet PC to be launched at Storage Visions in Las Vegas next month. Storage Visions is held concurrent to the Consumer Electronics Show 2010.
The ARMOR mobile and field unit tablet PC is certified to work in extreme temperatures and hold up to shock, vibration and drops, delivering up to nine hours of operating time.
The Intel SSD 310 drives are now shipping and priced at $99 for the 40GB capacity and $179 for the 80GB version, both in 1,000-unit quantities.

Chris Preimesberger

Chris J. Preimesberger

Chris J. Preimesberger is Editor-in-Chief of eWEEK and responsible for all the publication's coverage. In his 13 years and more than 4,000 articles at eWEEK, he has distinguished himself in reporting...