In April will not 'only' see the launch of the Ivy Bridge processor family. Intel is also preparing the arrival of some new solid state drives specifically designed to be used in SSD/HDD storage setups (made possible by the Smart Response Technology).
As with the 311 series, the 313 series will use SLC NAND flash, although Intel has moved from 34nm parts to 25nm parts. Beyond a change in NAND flash Intel has decided to offer two capacities, 20GB and 24GB. We're not sure what difference the extra 4GB of flash memory will make, but there's obviously a reason as to why Intel had added a second capacity to its range of caching drives. It's possible that we'll see slightly improved performance out of the 24GB drives, but sadly we don't have any performance figures at hand.
Intel is retaining the 2.5-inch and mSATA form factors, but the 2.5-inch drives are now only 7mm tall, instead of 9mm of the 311 series. The SATA interface is still at 3Gbps, but the reason for is simply because Intel doesn't have a new SSD controller of its own. The reason Intel is sticking with SLC flash for its caching drives is most likely because the company is expecting a high wear and tear ratio on this type of SSDs and as such using cheaper NAND flash would mean that the drives would wear out quicker.
As for pricing, well, things haven't changed much, with Intel's MSRP of the 20GB models coming in at US$99 (S$125) and the 24GB models being slightly more expensive at US$119 (S$150).
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