What is a TF card? Difference between TF card & micro SD card

What is a TF card? Difference between TF card & micro SD card

Originally created by the company Sandisk, the TF or TransFlash card was the original name of the now micro (SD) cards. Just like a regular SD card, TF cards also work as memory storage devices and are one of the smallest memory cards in existence. 

People, before the introduction of newer micro SD cards, used TF cards to store mobile data. Although it is now very hard to find original TF cards, they were pretty much what we now call micro SD cards. They have the same build, are both compatible with each other, and are still used today in many mobile devices. 

What is a TF card Difference between TF card & micro SD card

Difference Between TF card and micro SD card

With all that out of the way, let’s get into the main differences between a TF card and a micro SD card. Although there are no distinguishable differences between the two cards, there are ways to distinguish, format, and choose between the two.   


Although similar in physical and application means, the fundamental difference between the two cards lies in their build. The standard micro SD card is an upgraded memory card and is widely regarded as a semiconductor flash device. The TF card, however, is a small flash storage card for memory that comes under the NAND MLC and Sandisk upgrade and controlling tech. 

Time and conditions: 

As mentioned earlier, the average micro SD card is literally the TF card, but the difference lies in the time and conditions in which the TF card evolved into the micro SD. The original creator of the TF cards was Sandisk in 2004, but then came Digital Storage Organization and swooped in to claim combat gain and rights to the card, which is where they renamed the TF cards to micro SD cards. 

Storage capacity: 

Yes, the TF cards and regular micro SD cards support the same storage capacity; they are the exact same product at the end of the day. However, there is a difference in the storage that is more intricate, and that is the difference in maximum storage capacity. This very important difference is that the average micro SD card has a max storage capacity of up to 2 TB, whereas a TF card has a max storage capacity of 128 GB. Obviously, the TF card had to be upgraded in some way, and maximum storage was one such way. 

Memory performance: 

Both the TF cards and the micro SD cards can perform any function related to memory. But, this fundamental difference lies with non-memory performance. Unlike the TF card, a micro SD card can also perform non-memory functions in addition to memory functions. Some examples of non-memory functions include, but are not limited to, NFC, Bluetooth, GPS, and so on. 

Write security: 

One other difference in terms of their build is that a micro SD card comes with a little switch in the corner of the card, which is not present in the TF card. That very switch is the write security switch. It can be used as an additional protection mechanism to protect your device using a password. It has a manual access lock which, upon clicking, lets you reset your password. 

TF card & micro SD card- Which one is Best

And there you have it, and these are some very important differences between a TF card and a micro SD card. But there is still one question that has been left unanswered, how do you choose between the two for your mobile device? 

Here are some points to consider when choosing between the two; 

  • Storage: Note that the device that you purchase already has its own storage capacity, so if you are not looking to store a lot of anything important, consider the TF card; however, if you need large storage, the 2 TB in a micro SD card will surely come in handy. 
  •   List out the uses: Obviously, before purchasing a card, figure out the activities you want to perform on your device. If all you need is to store small data, the TF card works just fine; however, if you want to perform non-memory functions on your device like GPS tracking and Bluetooth, go with the micro SD card. 
  • That extra feature: Remember the security switch mentioned earlier? Well, it is an important element that distinguishes the TF from the micro SD card. So, if you want your memory card to be well-protected with a password, then a micro SD is your way to go. 


And that was it; those were some considerations to make while choosing which card you want to use for your device. One of the important things to keep in mind is that if you have a TF card plug adapter, then you can enjoy the benefits that come with both cards. 

A TF card can be converted to a micro SD card, but it cannot be done the other way around. Keep that in mind. But, at last, the biggest functionality your choice comes down to would be non-memory functions. Like any escape room, choose wisely because you do not want to end up solving a problem by buying a TF card without the adapter and not being able to use NFT for payments or GPS to go somewhere. 

Masri serves as the Chief Content Editor at BestKodiTips. With three years of experience, she excels in creating technical content, focusing on how-to guides, Android and Kodi tutorials, app reviews, and addressing common technological challenges. She ensures to stay abreast of the latest tech updates. Outside of work, Masir finds pleasure in reading books, watching documentaries, and engaging in table tennis.

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