PCI-SIG Finalizes PCI Express M.2 Specification for SSDs and Communication Cards

PCI Express M.2 Provides High Bandwidth to Power-Constrained Platforms

by Anton Shilov
12/12/2013 | 11:12 PM

PCI-SIG, the organization responsible for PCI Express technology, has announced the release of the PCIe M.2 specification revision 1.0 to its members. The M.2 is a next-generation form-factor for ultra-light and thin platforms; the M.2 architecture increases design flexibility to support high-end performance and enhanced data rates for power-constrained platforms.

 

As a natural progression from PCIe mini card and PCIe half mini card, the smaller M.2 form factor is designed to meet future market requirements for applications in thin mobile platforms, such as tablets, portable gaming devices, smartphones and devices requiring SSDs. Its extensible design provides scalability for multiple technologies and host interfaces, including Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, SSD and WWAN.

Revision 1.0 M.2 connectors support both single- and double-sided module cards and are available in connectorized or soldered-down forms. The connectorized forms allow single-sided modules for low profile solutions, or dual-sided modules for increased integration within the platform. All soldered-down module cards are single-sided and are intended for use in low profile applications.

Crucial/Micron M500 SSD in M.2 form-factor

The new M.2 specification allows for the manufacturing of larger PCBs, maximizing the use of the card space and leaving behind a minimal footprint. The specification also helps to address the demand for mobile device I/O solutions with new specifications targeted at ultra-light and thin platforms.

“As users switch from legacy PCs to compact mobile devices, their demand for robust and power-efficient computing platforms endures. The M.2 form factor offers tunable I/O technology, allowing developers to create the optimal balance of power and performance in their platform implementations,” said Al Yanes, PCI-SIG chairman and president.