Reprinted from a Sony press release:

Sony’s latest generation of Micro Vault USB storage media devices are built on the USB 2.0 platform, offering faster data transfer than their predecessors yet maintain backward compatibility with the USB 1.1 protocol.

The Micro Vault family includes a new 256 Megabyte (MB) model that can store the equivalent of 176 floppy disks, making it easy to transfer and store large amounts of data.

According to Tom Evans, vice president of marketing in the media and application solutions division of Sony Electronics’ Business Solutions and Systems Company, Micro Vault USB 2.0 media is designed for personal computer users who want maximum speed, convenience and security to store and share large digital images, music, video and presentation files. Capacities for the new Micro Vault family now range from 32 MB to 256 MB.

“Since computers and laptops with USB 2.0 ports have begun to ship in volume, our new Micro Vault units can help users take full advantage of their system’s high-speed capabilities,” Evans said. “Possible uses for the pocket-sized devices are endless–colleagues can swap files mid-flight, students can tote term papers and resumes around campus, and parents can even store their children’s medical information and images. They are also extremely practical and fashionable for both the business person and home user.”

Five Times Faster and Twice the Capacity
By employing Hi-speed USB technology, the new devices provide users with a file transfer speed that is five times faster than USB 1.1. Micro Vault USB 2.0 reads files at a speed of up to 5.5 MB per second, and writes files at up to 1 MB per second. For context, 5 MB is equivalent to 30 seconds of broadcast-quality video.

The new 256 MB-capacity model doubles the highest capacity of the first-generation of Micro Vault devices. With a 256 MB model, users can store huge files, including digital still images, presentation materials, digital audio and video, and even database files.

Computers with Windows 2000, ME, XP and Mac OS 9 and higher grade operating systems will automatically recognize the MicroVault USB 2.0 media device without requiring the installation of software drivers.

For steadfast security, the Micro Vault USB 2.0 line comes bundled with new user-friendly Password Lock software, which allows users to password-protect partitioned files or the entire drive. Password Lock, supported by Windows 2000, ME and XP, ensures the privacy of files when the Micro Vault device is shared with others, or if it is ever misplaced.

Sony’s USB 2.0 Micro Vault product line will be available in January through major retail outlets and online sites, including www.SonyStyle.com. The devices are available in the following colors and capacities:

a red 32 MB unit for a suggested retail price of $59.99;

a blue 64 MB unit for a suggested retail price of $79.99;

a black 128 MB unit for a suggested retail price of $129.99; and

a gray 256 MB unit for a suggested retail price of $199.99.

As part of an on-pack promotion, consumers who purchase either a 64MB or 128MB unit can receive by mail their choice of a free Micro Vault accessory–a USB extension cable, a detachable neck strap or a keychain carrying case.

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