At this point nearly every notebook and ultrabook ships with an mSATA slot. Some products ship with the slot populated and others hide the connector under the keyboard. Upcoming products based on Haswell CPUs will bring more SATA III mSATA ports to notebooks. It's time to find products to populate them.
Until now, a majority of products shipping with mSATA ports used SATA II connections. A few SATA III products hit the market, nearly all ultrabooks, but notebooks and desktop motherboards were electrically SATA II. That's about to change, though. Intel's new chipsets designed for fourth generation Core architecture provide up to six SATA III ports on the PCH. Intel's SATA III ports have proven to be far superior to third-party add-on ports.
I think Haswell will deliver a well-rounded experience for everyone, from notebook users to power users looking for the highest performance from every component. At this time there are very few Haswell notebook/ultrabooks on the market, but over the next three months that'll change. With everything heading Haswell's direction, the dream of $400 notebooks from Walmart with 8-hour battery life and SATA III is nearly a reality.
This opens a really wide channel for Plextor and other SSD makers to sell products to mainstream markets. A $400 notebook isn't going to ship with a large, high performance or for that matter any SSD at all.
A $400 notebook should include an mSATA port and with storage still the slowest component in a PC, it's also the first part that should get upgraded.
Today we spend time look at Plextor's PX-M5M mSATA 256GB SSD to see what it can do.
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