Android users love their expandable storage, and microSD cards keep getting cheaper while offering more and more storage. However, not all microSD cards offer similar performance, and some of them may not be recommended for your Android smartphone and tablet. That’s why the SD Association announced a new microSD card certification process a few weeks ago, meant to help buyers select proper cards for their Android devices.

Now, at CES 2017, SanDisk has unveiled the largest microSD card to receive A1-certification for Android devices.

A1, short for App Performance Class 1, is a classification meant to ensure that apps will run properly when installed on a microSD card instead of a device’s local storage. “The A1 spec allows the new card to manage random read input-output access per second (IOPS) of 1,500 and write IOPS of 500, so it can quickly open apps and process accompanying tasks, such as audio, graphics, saved profiles and in-app permissions,” SanDisk notes.

sandisk-256gb-a1Image Source: SanDisk

SanDisk’s new 256GB UHS-I card will be available worldwide for $199.99. The card is supposed to deliver “premium transfer speeds of up to 95MB/s,” which is pretty much on par with the company’s previous 256GB microSD card. But now SanDisk’s 256GB microSD card has A1 certification markings, as seen in the image above. SanDisk says the new Ultra microSD card with A1 “is designed to provide consumers a faster, more powerful app experience using cards.”

In late June 2016, SanDisk announced the world’s fastest 256GB microSD cards, including the Extreme (transfer speeds of up to 100MB/s, and write speeds of up to 90MB/s) and Ultra (premium transfer speeds of up to 95MB/s) models. If you happen to own either one, you won’t have to ditch them in favor of a card that has A1 written on it since they’ll offer you the exact same performance.

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