Card reader

Updated: 03/10/2024 by Computer Hope

Card reader may refer to any of the following:

1. Alternatively known as a media card reader, a card reader is a hardware device for reading and writing data on a memory card such as a multimedia card. Some card readers only have one card slot, and some have multiple card slots for different cards and media. In the picture below, you can see an example of a USB (universal serial bus) media card reader from Kingston. This card reader has a slot for miniSD, MicroSD, SD/MMC, MMCmicro, CF/MD, M2, and MS/DUO cards. Media card readers mostly find use for those who want to download information from expanded storage on a smartphone, or memory from a digital camera.

Kingston media card reader

Devices with built-in readers

3 1/2" drive bay card reader.

Memory card readers are also built into some printers, laptops, and can be put in a 5 1/4" or 3 1/2" drive bay in desktop computers. The picture (shown right) is a 3 1/2" drive bay media card reader for a desktop computer.

2. With early computers, a card reader was another name for a punched card reader to read punched cards.

Flash memory, Hardware terms, Memory cards, PC Card slot, Reader, Removable disk, SD card, USB thumb drive