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Super Speed USB 3.0

A USB (Universal Serial Bus) flash drive is a data storage device that consists of flash memory with an integrated Universal Serial Bus (USB) interface. USB flash drives are typically removable and rewritable, and physically much smaller than a floppy disk. Most weigh less than 30 g. As of September 2011 drives of 256 gigabytes (GB) are available, and storage capacities as large as 2 terabytes (TB) are planned, with steady improvements in size and price per capacity expected.

USB flash drives are often used for the same purposes for which floppy disks or CD-ROMs were used. They are smaller, faster, have thousands of times more capacity, and are more durable and reliable because they have no moving parts. Until approximately 2005, most desktop and laptop computers were supplied with floppy disk drives, but floppy disk drives have been abandoned in favor of USB ports.

USB Flash drives use the USB mass storage standard, supported natively by modern operating systems such as Linux, Mac OS X, Windows, and other Unix-like systems. USB drives with USB 2.0 support can store more data and transfer faster than much larger optical disc drives like CD-RW or DVD-RW drives and can be read by many other systems such as the Xbox 360, PlayStation 3, DVD players and in some upcoming mobile smartphones.

USB 3.0 offers dramatically improved data transfer rates compared to its predecessor (USB 2.0 ). Even though it was announced in late 2008, consumer devices were not available until the beginning of 2010. The USB 3.0 interface specifies transfer rates up to 5Gbit/s, compared to USB 2.0's 480 Mbit/s. All USB 3.0 devices are downward compatible with USB 2.0 ports. Computers with USB 3.0 ports are becoming very popular and common. Many newer laptops and Desktops have at least one such port. USB 3.0 port expansion cards are available to upgrade older systems, and many newer motherboards feature two or more USB 3.0 jacks. Even though the USB 3.0 interface allows extremely high data transfer speeds, as of 2011 most USB 3.0 flash drives did not utilize the full speed of the USB 3.0 interface due to limitations of their memory controllers.

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