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SanDisk leader shares 'iPod killer' insights

Sony, Creative, iRiver trailing in its wake

SanDisk has aggressive plans to seize market share from Apple's iPod business.

Speaking to USA Today recently, CEO Eli Harari explained his company's plans. From a standing start, SanDisk has quickly been able to emerge as the world's second-biggest MP3 player maker with a 10 percent market share.

"We had a significant advantage over competitors, because we could get flash memory at lower costs than Steve Jobs could," Harari said. "We came out of nowhere, and zoomed past Sony, iRiver, Creative and all the rest."

The company will release a new music player in the US this week, which its leader describes as better-featured than the iPod nano.

SanDisk is also working with partner companies such as Napster and Microsoft to help boost what it offers. Harari promised to compete. "Apple hasn't had a competing alternative that's just as good," he said. "But that's going to change. We are not going to be a 10 percent player. We will improve our position."

Looking forward at the future of the flash memory market, SanDisk's CEO offered an interesting vision. "We believe that in 20 years' time, we will be able to fit 10 terabytes of information into a card that's as small as a quarter. That's the amount of memory we have in the human brain," he said.

"When you have that kind of memory, you could store a human lifetime's worth of memory into one of these cards. You could implant a device like this in your head to restore memory."

This story first appeared on Macworld.co.uk.

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