SanDisk unveils a portable 8TB SSD prototype and 1TB USB-C thumb drive

The prototype SSD transfers data at a super-fast 20Gbps.

If you're in the market for a portable SSD, you're probably looking at drives that are at most 2TB in capacity -- 4TB SSDs exist, but they're few and far between. SanDisk is plowing ahead, though, and is showing off an 8TB SSD prototype at CES. The company says it's the world's highest capacity, pocket-sized SSD with a transfer rate of 20Gbps. The drive looks a bit bigger than the company's current Extreme Portable External SSD models, but that's to be expected, since it has a much higher capacity and transfers data roughly four times faster.

Since this is a prototype, there's no telling when SanDisk will actually release a portable 8TB SSD, but with so few 4TB drives available, it may take a while for the market to be ready for such a large -- and expensive -- option. That said, it wouldn't be a surprise if SanDisk were the first to market with an 8TB SSD -- the company was the first to debut a 1TB microSD card earlier this year.

One SanDisk drive that will be available soon is the company's 1TB SanDisk Ultra Dual Drive Luxe thumb drive. Thanks to its dual connector design, it works with both standard USB-A devices and USB-C smartphones and laptops. Just swivel the connector section 180 degrees to change from one connector to the other. The all-metal construction gives the drive an elegant appearance that won't look goofy on a keychain. SanDisk says it will be available later this winter.

SanDisk Ultra Dual Drive Luxe Thumb Drive

SanDisk's Extreme Portable SSDs are reliable and affordable, so an update with higher capacities and faster speeds could be a big draw for people who need to carry around a lot of data or back up files quickly. And with the transition to USB-C starting to pick up, having a thumb drive that doesn't need an adapter could make it a bit easier to transfer data between old and new devices.