Solid state storage has come a long way in recent years but Intel is shaking things up with the release of its new Optane SSD DC P4800X.

This SSD is designed to be a sort of midway between DRAM which is rather expensive to implement at scale and NAND which, while cheap and burgeoning with capacity just isn’t always fast enough.

The P4800X then is the coming together of the best bits of these technologies built on the back of Intel and Micron’s 3D XPoint technology which was announced back in 2015.

This particular SSD has a capacity of 375GB and will have an initial price of $1520 (~R19 280). There are also plans to release 750GB and 1.5TB PCIe models and 375GB, 750GB and 1.5GB models with a U.2 form factor throughout 2017.

The initial release is limited so don’t expect to order one for your gaming PC, in fact putting this in your gaming PC would be doing it a disservice. The P4800X is primed for data center use thanks to its incredulous throughput speeds.

The SSD is capable of 550 000 read input/output operations per second (IOPS) and 500 000 write IOPS according to Intel. The drive is also rather resilient as it will be used in data centers which write and rewrite swathes of data at a time. The manufacturer says the P4800X is capable of 30 daily writes per day or 12.3 petabytes.

So while the likelihood of us mere mortals getting our hands on one of these drives right now might be a pipe dream but it’s exciting that this technology is out there and perhaps it will bleed into the consumer market sooner rather than later.

Brendyn Lotz writes news, reviews, and opinion pieces for Hypertext. His interests include SMEs, innovation on the African continent, cybersecurity, blockchain, games, geek culture and YouTube.