SanDisk and Toshiba have announced development of a new technology that could lead to the release of 32GB microSD cards.

The two companies are working on multi-level cell flash memory to produce a 32GB three-bits-per-cell memory chip. That's a lot of high-end technology to wade through, but essentially means more stuff squashed into a smaller space while still working fast enough to read and write at acceptable speeds.

Sanjay Mehtrotra, founder and president of SanDisk, highlighted the speed at which developments are moving in the memory card industry, and said the new announcement will allow the company to "offer higher capacities at compelling form factors while reducing manufacturing costs - all helping to expand our various product lines."

Smaller! We want smaller!

SanDisk also highlighted the growing demand for smaller memory cards in portable devices, mostly mobile phones, and says the new technology will allow it to bring more products to market to service this need.

The likes of Nokia, Samsung and Sony Ericsson already bundle memory cards with their mobile phones rather than offering inbuilt storage in some models, which means users can hot swap content more easily.

Most mobile phone press releases already talk about the theoretical maximum memory their handsets can hold, and the release of the new memory card will mean many will start claiming a 64GB memory capacity - as 32GB is the maximum on-board storage capacity released so far.

The new card is expected to start being produced in the second half of 2009, so if you haven't digitised your entire music and movie collection, perhaps you better get cracking.

Via Symbian-Freak