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How Popular Is U3 Software

Yesterday GetUSB.info reported on Kingston giving U3 the axe and their decision to stop selling the portable application bundled into Kingston UFDs.

Interestingly enough, part of that announcement indicated sales for U3 devices are lack-luster and demand for U3 drives aren’t high enough to offset the royalty fee associated with platform.

u3 popularity

However, as the story broke, GetUSB.info just finished their latest USB Poll on “Do You Own a Flash Drive With U3 Software?” The results concluded that 64% of GetUSB.info readers have U3 drives, where as the balance do not. Seems to us, there are some mixed numbers.

…some industry players commented that Kingston’s move is actually a reflection of industry players’ conservative outlook over U3 promotion. Since U3 is a joint platform developed by SanDisk and MSystems, the consolidation between the two companies and the relatively low promotion and marketing activities for U3 during their consolidation resulted in disappointing customer adoption rates.

64% a low adoption rate?  So the next question becomes does SanDisk and their OEM’s have that strong of a market share to reflect GetUSB.info results? I will say, most GetUSB.info visitors are from the US, so it is quite possible U3 is popular in the states, but as a global software product, either too expensive or not enough value add.

It will be interesting to see the trend with U3 and how it fairs with other companies creating the same solution. One thing is for certain, U3 is backed by the biggest players in the industry, so if SanDisk, Verbatim, Memorex and others decide to really turn on the marketing heat, it’ll be a tough act to follow.

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