Samsung’s new 256 GB 950 PRO solid-state drive weighs all of 10 gram. That is not much heavier than a credit card, though buying the card will mean it has to be swiped for $199.9 for the 256GB version and $349.99 for the 512GB version. The SSD will be launched in markets including India from October and will be priced around Rs 15,000.
The 950 PRO SSD is also super small at 3.15 x 0.87 x 0.097 inches. The 950 PRO succeeds the 850 PRO and EVO SSD launched in 2014.
“The global market for SSDs is increasing. No longer are consumers dismissing the idea of purchasing an SSD solely because they think the price is too high,” says Un-Soo Kim, Samsung senior vice-president for branded memory business.
According to a survey Samsung conducted with Google, users are looking for better capacity and performance when it comes to SSDs.
The 950 PRO SSD is the company’s first consumer-ready SSD to use non-volatile memory express (NVMe), an interface used mostly in enterprise systems. “The NVMe interface on the 950 Pro is a clear break from the past. It will unleash the full potential of NAND flash storage. It is only recently that the consumer PC market has come together with an ecosystem for NVMe support. The new Intel SkyLake processors and the Windows 10 OS driver support for NVMe makes this shift possible,” said Kim. Linux will also start supporting NVMe interface soon.
The SSD also comes with Samsung’s proprietary vertical NAND (v-NAND) technology, and has a compact m.2 form factor. Samsung is promising enterprise-level technology, read/write speeds, reduced latency and better battery performance for laptops with its new 950 PRO SSD.
Samsung says it expects to ship 13 million units of branded V-NAND SSD units this year, globally. The 950 Pro SSD supports the PCIe Gen.3×4 lane interface. Samsung claims the two SSDs have a sequential read/write speeds of 2500 (512GB) and 1500 (256GB) mbps. It comes with 512 MB LDDR3 RAM.
The new SSDs are aimed at professionals, designers, engineers, etc, and those whose work depends on high-speed SSD for data access, running simulations, graphics, etc.
The new 950 PRO SSD also comes with AES 256-bit full disk encryption to protect data and a dynamic thermal guard to protect the drive from inclement weather conditions (0 to 70 degrees Celsius).
Both version of the new 950 PRO SSD will come with five year limited warranty. Samsung also announced that it will launch a 4TB version of 850 PRO and a 1TB version of 850 Evo in early 2016.
(Travel for this report was sponsored by Samsung India)