Memory Stick Supporting Companies Gather at Second Memory Stick Partners Forum


Cumulative Worldwide Shipment of Memory Stick Reaches 20 Million

Tokyo, Japan Press Release – “Memory Stick” IC recording media supporting companies today gathered at the Memory Stick Partners Forum. It was the second time to hold the Forum, and the participants included hardware manufacturers, software developers, service providers, telecommunications operators, content holders, and component makers (number of Memory Stick supporting companies: total 246 as of May 31, 2002.) The objective of the Forum was to give participants an opportunity to exchange the latest information about Memory Stick technology in order to deepen technical and business knowledge of Memory Stick’s easy use and power to link a wide variety of electronic products.

At the forum, the supporting companies shared information about their current Memory Stick business situation, their Memory Stick road maps, promotion plans and relevant technological information such as application solutions and compatibility verification. Forty-seven of the supporting companies exhibited Memory Stick compliant products during the Forum.One of the Memory Stick Forum’s highlights was a new 16MB multi-purposed “Memory Stick Duo” IC recording media currently scheduled for market introduction in July 2002. Taking full advantage of its compact size and thin structure, the Memory Stick Duo is well suited for a wide range of popular consumer products such as cellular phones and compact audio players. In addition, content recorded on the Memory Stick Duo can be played back on a variety of standard Memory Stick products by using a Memory Stick Duo adapter. The Memory Stick Duo is approximately one third the size of the dimensions and a half the weight of a standard Memory Stick. While further popularizing the concept of Memory Stick’s networking world by its compatibility with standard Memory Stick products (using an adapter), the Memory Stick Duo indicates the next phase of Memory Stick development by offering a flash memory recording media for ultra small portable devices.

Future new Memory Stick products also include the “Memory Stick-ROM” which has been designed as a future package media for music, image contents and other data. By adopting the mask ROM process, it will be possible to commercialize “Memory Stick-ROM” at a lower cost to regular Memory Stick. A 8MB Memory Stick-ROM is ready for mass production.

Also announced during the Forum was the introduction of a new application tentatively called “Memory Stick-R” which will further expand Memory Stick’s networking world. In a natural expansion of standard Memory Stick technology, “Memory Stick-R” is being positioned to offer reasonably priced, write-once media, which will enhance the relationship between content storage and Memory Stick. The new reasonably priced, easy-to-use storage application can further develop the content business by making it more attractive to users.

Since its market introduction in September 1998, Memory Stick has evolved from a storage media for recording picture images and/or computer data to a broad networking media used for network services such as the Internet, telecommunication and multimedia Kiosks, etc. Cumulative shipments of Memory Stick worldwide in March 2002 have reached 20 million, and worldwide cumulative shipments of Memory Stick compliant products have also reached 20 million units at the end of March 2002. It took approximately three years to achieve the first 10 million shipments of Memory Stick, however in the last 12 months sales of Memory Stick have reached additional 10 million shipments. This reflects a rapid growth in Memory Stick and Memory Stick compliant products (especially audio products incorporated a copyright protection technology “MagicGate”) and a growing momentum among Memory Stick Partners. Incidentally 20% of total Memory Stick sale in fiscal year 2001 attributes to “MagicGate” copyright protected Memory Stick.
Memory Stick compliance is expected to be adopted in even more product categories over next few years to meet growing consumer needs. Cumulative shipments of Memory Stick are expected to reach 60 million in year 2003 and 120 million in year 2004. In parallel, cumulative shipments of memory Stick compliant products are expected to reach 100 million respectively in year 2004.

The companies that support Memory Stick aim to strengthen their relationship in order to further develop and promote Memory Stick and its various applications, as a platform to link people with a wide range of content and services in the coming ubiquitous networking era.


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