Micron And SK Hynix Push Blistering 9.6Gbps LPDDR5X For Snapdragon 8 Gen 3 Phones

SK Hynix LPDDR5X news
Although Qualcomm's latest Snapdragon 8 Gen 3 is the star of the show when it comes to showcasing the next generation of smartphones and their performance, a processor can only do so much on its own. Fast memory is required to give such a cutting-edge chip the leg room it needs to perform, and to that end Micron and SK hynix have announced they've launched LPDDR5X running at 9,600MHz, or 9.6Gbps. It's over twice as fast as LPDDR4X, 50% faster than LPDDR5, and 12% faster than last-generation LPDDR5X.

At 9,600MHz, LPDDR5X has actually exceeded the speeds you'd get by default even from the highest-end DDR5 RAM sticks (though they can be overclocked). That might sound like overkill, but faster memory is a big deal for smaller chips that can't afford to have tons of cache. Plus, LPDDR5X is low power (hence the LP in the name), and Micron claims its LPDDR5X fabbed on its 1-Beta process consumes 30% less power than its competitor's older 1-Alpha LPDDR5X. SK hynix also claims a power efficiency improvement on its LPDDR5T, which is very similar to LPDDR5X but even lower power.

Qualcomm Snapdragon 8 Gen 3 news

Micron and SK hynix specifically talked about how this faster LPDDR5X would be useful for accelerating AI workloads, but faster memory can provide for a generally more efficient smartphone. Faster RAM can also help boost gaming performance not just because the CPU has more memory bandwidth, but also because the integrated graphics rely on system memory such as LPDDR5X as video RAM..

While this new generation of LPDDR5X has been talked about mostly in the context of the latest Snapdragon, it will also undoubtedly be useful for high-end laptops, NUC-like PCs, and gaming handhelds like the Steam Deck or ROG Ally. Even larger x86 CPUs made by Intel and AMD can still benefit quite a bit from higher memory clock speeds and bandwidth, especially when it comes to gaming while CPU bound or when using integrated graphics, like on one of AMD's APUs.
Tags:  Micron, sk hynix, lpddr5x