What is an Embedded Flash Drive?
The term, embedded flash drive (EFD) has cropped up more in technology lingo as consumers need expanded storage options for their cell phones, laptops and other memory devices. What’s more is that while embedded flash drives share a common thread with the custom USB flash drive as we know it, the two are vastly different.
Like USB flash drives, EFDs utilize NAND flash, a type of non-volatile memory that is made into the form of a silicon chip. With this type of memory, it retains data with and without its power supply. USB drives are more of an external, easily removable plug and play storage option compared to embedded flash drives. As their name suggests, EFDs are built into USB devices and other electronics by either a manufacturer or consumer via the gadget’s allotted memory compartment. Digital cameras, cell phones, GPS navigators and MP3 players all use them. As a result, EFDs supplement the memory that already comes standard in the device.
EFDs got their big break in the digital world by operating a bit like an SSD/HDD hybrid. They were used in commercial and industrial controllers and over time found their rightful place in a more flash memory oriented capacity. Embedded flash drives replaced straight raw NAND components in cell phones since this approach was too taxing on the host processor when it came to functions like reading and writing. The integration of EFD also helped original equipment manufacturers bypass involvement in dealing with this type of storage thanks to flash manufacturers.
When it comes to actual use, cameras and camcorders now store images and video on EFD. In some cases, MP3 players store more audio on EFD than on memory cards. Embedded flash drives have even found a place in our latest smartphones and tablets by not only allowing for more storage, but also boosting transfer and operation speeds as well as synchronization.
Two different types of flash drives, two very different ways of approaching digital storage. Additionally, what sets them apart also demonstrates that we can’t live without either of them.
EFD versus flash drives, what’s your take? Can you think of any other differences? What experience do you have with using both? Share your insights below!