Nintendo announced that SanDisk will release Switch-branded MicroSD cards earlier this year. The cards themselves aren’t unique, aside from their inclusion of the Switch logo, but the partnership could allow SanDisk to become the brand of choice for Switch owners looking for extra storage.
SanDisk are one of the most popular and reliable brands of memory so it makes perfect sense for Nintendo to team up with them to sell officially licensed memory cards to expand the internal memory of the Switch.
Tom Prata, Nintendo of America’s Senior VP had this to say:
Western Digital is a global leader in memory storage, and its SanDisk brand microSD cards are trusted by consumers around the world. These new Nintendo-licensed memory cards provide significant additional storage for digital content, and in many retail locations they will be conveniently displayed alongside Nintendo Switch games and accessories.
Sven Rathjen, Vice President of Product Marketing for Western Digital was equally as enthusiastic:
As more and more amazing games and related content become available for download on Nintendo Switch, our licensed memory cards allow users to quickly and easily expand their storage. Nintendo Switch has generated tremendous momentum, and we are thrilled to partner with Nintendo to offer consumers a trusted card for their system.
To be perfectly honest, not a great deal.
Two cards will be available. The first bears Link from The Legend of Zelda on its packaging and, more important, boasts a 64GB capacity with up to 100MBps sequential read and 60MBps sequential write speeds. The second features Mario, that card has a 128GB capacity and up to 100MBps sequential read and 90MBps sequential write speeds.
Why should I get one then?
Well, for starters games like The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild require at least 14GB of storage if they’re downloaded from the eShop, that doesn’t include save game data, expansions, and updates that could take up even more space.
That means you could buy two particularly large games and run out of storage on the Switch. In which case, you either have to remove something from the console or purchase an SD card.
The more intriguing possibility is that a single game will require more storage than the Switch’s carts provide. Part of the reason why people buy physical versions of games is to sidestep the storage problem. Still, we’d be interested to see how something could escape the bounds of those carts, even if the rise of digital gaming is the more likely explanation for Nintendo’s statement.
If anything, this will make it easier for parents and family members to grab the right storage card when buying gifts come Christmas.