Worldwide 2014 sales of flash memory excluding SSD expanded two per cent, largely on the back of a surge of interest in MicroSD cards, according to figures from Futuresource Consulting.
Some 1.2bn units of flash memory were shipped globally as aftermarket add-ons, it said, with MicroSD cards alone expanding 11 per cent by volume.
Mats Larsson, senior market analyst at Futuresource, said the volume increases are largely being generated by the continuing fall in prices. Trade value closed the year at $9.8bn (£6.5bn) globally – two per cent down from 2013 – he pointed out.
"The MicroSD card segment is the driving force of the worldwide flash aftermarket, growing 11 per cent in 2014 and with continued growth forecast for 2015," Larsson confirmed.
"Conversely, flash USB pen drives and standard-sized cards are in decline."
The Asia-Pacific region currently accounts for almost 40 per cent of worldwide flash memory sales, followed by the Americas with 22 per cent of the market. Emerging African nations, though, showed the strongest increase in demand for flash products in 2014, according to Larsson.
"In a consolidated market, SanDisk is the leading vendor followed by Kingston and Transcend, with the top three brands together accounting for 50 per cent of the worldwide retail market," he added.
"16GB capacity took the number-one spot in worldwide retail last year, followed by 8GB, which still remains the capacity of choice in many countries."
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