Press Release: MultiMediaCard Association approves "ATA on MMC''

The MultiMediaCard Association (MMCA) today announced it has approved "ATA on MMC" Specification Ver. 1.0, the interface designed especially for small form factor disk drives in next-generation portable consumer electronic devices. The ver. 1.0 specification is the first work to be released by the MMCA "ATA on MMC" Technical Sub-Committee, formed in June 2004 to address the growing needs of low-power hard disk drive data storage solution for small CE devices. The "ATA on MMC" interface specification enables HDDs to leverage the MMC bus already supported on many CE products. It is a cost effective solution to implement HDDs in small systems with low pin count, low voltage, and efficient power management.

"ATA on MMC" Specification Ver. 1.0 is an interface protocol extension to the core MMC System Specification Ver. 4.x to enable ATA protocol commands and parameters to be transported through the MMC bus interface. Designed for easy implementation, the specification offers the highest degree of interoperability and compatibility with MMCA technology while remaining backward compatible with the existing controller base. Silicon vendors and card manufacturers benefit from improved integration, while consumers will see extensive storage capacity in exciting products still to come.

MMC "ATA on MMC'' interface specification
The MMCA had previously announced in January 2005 a liaison relationship with the CE-ATA Promoter Group which was formed in September 2004 to undertake a similar effort in creating a HDD interface standard that leverages the MMC interface on small CE devices. Working jointly with the CE-ATA Promoter Group, the MMCA aims to create a true common HDD interface standard for CE devices.

"ATA on MMC'' version 1.0 - Fast time-to-market solution
According to Marko Ahvenainen, Chairman of the MMCA "ATA on MMC" Technical Sub-Committee, "Since many host devices already support MMC bus in their architectures, 'ATA on MMC' Specification Ver. 1.0 delivers a fast time-to-market solution for mini hard drives that is compatible with the host controllers in existing CE devices. We expect that in Ver 2.0, we will be fully aligned with the CE-ATA Promoter Group in establishing a common standard."

"MMCA "ATA on MMC" Technical Sub-Committee
The MMCA "ATA on MMC" Technical Sub-Committee formed in June 2004 currently has 41 contributing member companies. The CE-ATA Promoter Group represents some of the leading firms in the handheld and CE market, including Hitachi Global Storage Technologies, Intel Corporation, Marvell Semiconductor, Nokia Corporation, Seagate Technology and Toshiba America Information Systems.

About The MMCA (MultiMediaCard Association
The MultiMediaCard Association (MMCA) is the open standard organization that defines the physical, functional and interface specifications of MultiMediaCards (MMCs), the postage-stamp size, removable memory cards used in mobile phone, digital imaging and portable consumer electronics applications. While removable memory cards are the primary focus, the MMCA also supports the adoption of the MMC interface standard in other embedded or removable components and subsystems, such as hard disk drives. Founded in 1998, the MMCA provides a global forum for memory card and semiconductor component suppliers, software vendors and manufacturers of mobile electronic devices who jointly endorse and promote the worldwide adoption of MultiMediaCards and the MMC standards.

Posted: Fri - September 16, 2005 at 06:59 PM