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While handheld devices will increasingly offer hard disk drive solutions, by 2012, flash memory will remain king, predicts research company Parks Associates.

According to Parks Associates’ latest report on storage opportunities for handheld devices, 99 percent of mobile phones will have a Flash memory solution through 2007, dipping to 96 percent by the end of 2012. This slight shift is due to a small but emerging market for hard disk drive (HDD) solutions in handheld devices.

“The benefits of Flash memory – non-volatility, fast read times, and shock resistance – make this technology ideal for mobile phones and other handheld devices such as MP3 players and digital cameras,” said Parks Associates Analyst Chris Roden. “However, HDD will have some market opportunities in the near future.”

Several consumer segments in the early-adopter and early-majority categories will demand the higher storage capacity of HDD including Mobile Aficionados, Mobile Workers, and Music and Video Lovers, the report states.

“These consumers will require greater storage, and the low cost per gigabyte will carve out a market opportunity in handheld devices for HDD memory,” Roden said.

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