If the general public cast a Flash Memory popularity contest right now SD would win by a Brazilian-sized country mile. So it isn’t surprisingly to hear upgrades are planned.
Instigated by that wily old goat, the SD Card Association (SDA), the plans are to create a revised design called the SDHC Memory card which will hold capacities well beyond 2GB and greatly increasing data transfer speeds.
Propping all this up will be a raft of performance standards designed to ensure minimum operational quality. The first is the SD Speed Class Rating, equivalent to Mpeg2 video, the others: SD Audio (a universal standard to move music libraries between cell phones, digital music players, computers, car stereos and the like), SD Video (secure video transfer) and SD Binding (which enables content providers to prevent unauthorised copying of downloaded materials) should mean even the cheapest of SDHC cards performance to a high level. On second thoughts, I’m not so sure I like the Binding one…!
Given that SDHC is still only at discussion level (which usually involves having meetings about meetings about meetings), the proposed standard could take a fair while to reach shop shelves. It wouldn’t be unreasonable to ask them to do it before the end of the year though, you think?