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Definition: storage device


A peripheral unit that holds data without power until purposely erased. Computer storage comprises internal and external hard drives and solid state drives (SSDs); however, optical discs and USB drives may also be used.

In smartphones and tablets, the built-in flash memory is the storage. Smartphones may also allow insertable flash memory in the form of microSD cards. Datacenter storage devices are typically arrays of hard drives or SSDs. In the past, magnetic tape was widely used. See magnetic disk, SSD, SD card, magnetic tape, optical disc, USB drive and memory card.