Items tagged with DRAM

For the first time ever, Samsung is applying extreme ultraviolet (EUV) technology to its production of dynamic random-access memory (DRAM) modules, and has already shipped one million of them in DDR4 form. Looking further down the road, Samsung anticipates this leading to more cutting-edge EUV process nodes, including what will be used on its upcoming DDR5 memory chips next year. No other memory maker has yet adopted EUV in DRAM production, so in that regard, Samsung earns itself a bit of bragging rights. More importantly for customers, this could potentially lead to lower pricing due to better yields, and faster performance. To what extent, however, remains to be seen, but we should find out... Read more...
Pricing for DRAM and NAND flash memory products have proven to be fickle over the years, as the memory chip market is a volatile one. It sometimes seems like even changes in the wind can affect pricing. Or more recently, the Coronavirus that is wreaking havoc is also affecting the memory market. That said, Adata chairman Simon Chen is confident that both consumer demand and pricing on memory products will pick back up once the virus is contained. It's not clear to what extent the Coronavirus is impacting the memory industry specifically. In other markets, it is taking a toll. In both Shanghai and Hong Kong, Disney closed its amusement parks to help stop the virus from spreading, which some estimates... Read more...
If you are on the fence about pouncing on a graphics card upgrade, you may want to go ahead pull the trigger. For one, the GPU is the most important component when it comes to playing games, and trying to get by with an old and outdated card can mean having to constantly fiddle with in-game settings. However, there potentially is a more pressing reason to upgrade—higher prices on the horizon. We are not sounding the alarm by any means. However, market research firm TrendForce, a division of DRAMeXchange, is expecting a "sharp upturn" in graphics DRAM prices in the first quarter of 2020 (unlike PC DRAM). Analysts say server DRAM prices will lead the upwards trend in pricing due to supply... Read more...
If you're a semiconductor manufacturer pumping out DRAM and NAND for today's hordes of electronic devices, you might be sitting in a corner crying right now. But for us enthusiasts that need to purchase DDR4 modules and PCIe NVMe SSDs for our gaming rigs, the closing months of 2019 might be a prime opportunity to make new purchases. The semiconductor industry is staring down the barrel of a 9.6 percent decline in revenue for 2019, taking totals for the year to $429 billion versus $475 billion during all of 2018. To put that in perspective, it was forecast that revenue for the year would only be down by 3.4 percent, but a perfect storm of variables has turned those projections upside down. As... Read more...
Samsung Electronics has launched the highest capacity mobile DRAM for smartphones promising it will power next-gen experiences for devices. Samsung's new memory tech is the industry's first 12GB low-power double data rate 4X, or LPDDR4X, package that is optimized for premium smartphones. The new chips provide higher capacity than most ultra-thin notebooks offer, and should give smartphone users plenty of headroom to tackle more demanding applications in the future. Samsung promises a seamless user experience for features like multiple-cameras, 2x screen sizes, AI, and 5G connectivity. Samsung notes that the 12GB mobile DRAM will maximize the potential of devices that have more than five... Read more...
Micron on Wednesday made a couple of announcements aimed at advancing the mobile memory and enterprise storage markets. Starting with the former, Micron said it has begun mass producing the industry's highest capacity monolithic memory for mobile devices and applications, and specifically 12-gigabit (Gb) low-power double data rate 4x (LPDDR4x) DRAM. The LPDDR4x DRAM is being produced on a 10-nanometer class process technology. Micron claims the new memory is capable of reducing power by up to 10 percent at similar data rates of 4,266 megabits per second (Mbps) compared to previous generation memory. Realistically that's not going to have a big impact on a smartphone's battery life, but every... Read more...
Memory prices are falling, folks, and just in time for the holiday shopping season. That's the good news. The even better news is that this might be the start of a longer term price drop, or price correction, if you prefer, after the cost of memory chips skyrocketed over the past year. We're not talking about nominal price drops either, but significant ones. According to DRAMeXchange, a division of TrendForce, major DRAM suppliers are coming off of contract negotiations that saw the contract prices of PC DRAM products "turn downward sharply" in October. Compared to the previous quarter, the average contract price of a 4GB DRAM module dropped 10.14 percent. Similarly, the contract price for an... Read more...
Back in September, we reported that Intel's CPU shortage could end up having a positive effect on the DRAM market for consumers. TrendForce said that the CPU shortage coupled with an oversupply in the DRAM market could lead to a quarter-over-quarter decrease of about 2 percent in pricing. Today, however, TrendForce division DRAMeXchange is getting a bit more aggressive in its analysis of the market, and is expecting larger declines in 2019 for both DRAM and NAND flash. In addition to the aforementioned Intel shortage, there is uncertainty in the server market, and smartphone demand has been "sluggish" due to many people sitting out the yearly upgrade cycle. DRAMeXchange... Read more...
Intel has reportedly been fighting a shortage of Whiskey Lake CPUs for the notebook market that will impact shipment numbers across the notebook supplier market. The decline in shipments due to that CPU shortage will also impact the memory market according to TrendForce. Intel’s CPU shortage will decrease notebook shipments to the tune of 0.2% year-over-year. With fewer notebooks shipping, the memory market will also be affected and cause a worsening oversupply in the market. Intel is being mum about the exact reason behind the CPU shortage. It's also reported that other products are impacted by the shortage including 14nm++ Coffee Lake Refresh and the 14nm+ Coffee Lake CPUs. A shortage... Read more...
Samsung is trumpeting the development of what it claims is the industry's first 10-nanometer class 8-gigabit (Gb) LPDDR5 DRAM, which is the latest addition to the company's premium memory chip line. This new DRAM will be find homes in upcoming 5G and artificial intelligence (AI) enabled mobile devices, including next-generation smartphone models. Note that 10nm class means anywhere between 10 and 20 nanometers. It's highly unlikely these are actual 10nm chips, or Samsung would just call them that. Nevertheless, it represents an advancement over Samsung's previous generation DRAM. According to Samsung, its 8Gb LPDDR5 DRAM has a data rate of up to 6,400 megabits per second (Mb/s), which is 1.5... Read more...
Next-generation graphics cards that employ new GDDR6 memory should offer gobs of additional memory bandwidth. That new memory has been in the works for a while now and mass production has begun at various manufacturers as well. That means we could be seeing graphics cards launch soon packing the new memory on-board. In fact, NVIDIA wil soon be talking a bit about its GTX11 GPUs that will use GDDR6 memory. Micron has offered up some details that talk about some aspects of the new RAM and it sports significant updates. Micron notes that GDDR6 has several silicon enhancements, and has offered insight about performance measurements of the new memory, along with its improved signal integrity. One... Read more...
Price fixing in the DRAM market is nothing new unfortunately. As recently as January this year, a Chinese regulator accused Samsung other chip manufacturers of artificially increasing prices to pad their margins. Samsung is also no stranger to price fixing, as a $300 million judgement against it and Hynix was handed down in 2006 here in the United States. Today, however, Samsung and other DRAM manufacturers are facing another legal fight in the U.S., and it comes courtesy of the law firm Hagens Berman. A class action lawsuit was filed today in U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California and alleges that Samsung, Micron and Hynix conspired to artificially limit... Read more...
Samsung Electronics has announced its estimates for Q1 operating profit, which jumped 56% to a record high. Analysts believe that the increased profit estimates have to do with high demand for DRAM memory chips. That record demand for memory could be an offset to the glut of inventory Samsung has on the display side. Samsung allegedly is scrambling to find buyers for the OLED screens it made for Apple after the company reportedly reduced orders due to slow sales of the iPhone X. Samsung has stated that its preliminary earnings reports for the quarter spanning January-March 2018 had operating income estimated to be 15.6 trillion won, which is about $14.7 billion. The same quarter a year before... Read more...
Surging NAND flash and DRAM memory chip pricing has prompted China's economic regulator to look into whether or not suppliers such as Samsung and others have engaged in price fixing shenanigans. The chips in question are found in a variety of electronics products, most notably mobile phones, which use both NAND flash and DRAM ICs for permanent and temporary storage duties. "We have noticed the price surge and will pay more attention to future problems that may be caused by 'price fixing' in the sector," said Xu Xinyu, an official with the Pricing Supervision Department of the National Development and Reform Commission. He did not elaborate on the matter. Wang Yanhui, secretary general of the... Read more...
It won't be all that long before flagship smartphones routinely wield 8 gigabytes of system memory. In an effort to make that happen, Samsung today introduced what it says is the industry's first 8GB LPDDR4 (low power, double data rate 4) mobile DRAM package. The 8GB DRAM package utilizes four of the newest 16 gigabit (Gb) LPDDR4 memory chips built on a 10-nanometer class manufacturing process. To be clear, this isn't actually 10nm DRAM we're talking about there. When Samsung says "10nm-class" it's referring to a process technology node that's somewhere between 10nm and 19nm, just as "20nm-class" denotes a process technology node somewhere between 20nm and 29nm. If these chips were actually built... Read more...
This past summer, Intel and Micron jointly announced a new type of memory they call 3D XPoint. While new memory types seem to emerge all of the time, this one stood out based on the fact that it's being touted as 1,000x faster than NAND. It almost seems too good to be true, and I guess that's all it is until we begin to see production silicon trickle out onto the market. Nonetheless, Intel and Micron have just found themselves more competition with a duo involving SanDisk and HP. On the SanDisk side, the company has been tightly integrated into the memory and storage market for quite some time, and is one of the world's leaders in NAND production. To say it brings a lot to the partnership here... Read more...
Every few months, some huge chipmaker comes out with yet another advancement in memory technology that makes it simpler to shove more and more memory into tighter and tighter spaces. That's what is happening this week with Samsung's announcement that it is "mass producing the industry’s most advanced 8-gigabit (Gb) DDR4 memory and 32-gigabyte (GB) module, both of which will be manufactured based on a new 20-nanometer (nm) process technology, for use in enterprise servers." With its new 8Gb DDR4, Samsung now offers a full line-up of 20nm-based DRAM to lead a new era of 20nm DRAM efficiency that also includes the 20nm 4Gb DDR3 for PCs and the 20nm 6Gb LPDDR3 for mobile devices. Using the... Read more...
For years, RAM has followed a predictable pattern in the computing industry. New standards debut, with questionable performance gains and at significantly higher costs compared to previous products. As time passes, the new standard is adopted by more and more chipsets and vendors until it becomes dominant. Costs drop, volume rises, and everyone is happy. Now, however, Apple is expected to account for up to 25% of all DRAM sales next year -- more than any other vendor -- and that simple fact could have a significant impact on the adoption of next-generation standards. Mobile Over Desktop According to analysts, demand for Apple's iPhone 6, 6 Plus, and a rumored iPad Air with 2GB of RAM instead... Read more...
Thin and light clients are all the rage these days, even in the desktop space -- from Intel's NUC to many diminutive Steam Machines, the idea from OEMs is that even mainstream buyers are going to adopt system form factors the size of playing cards. If true, it would explain the thinking behind Apacer's latest innovation -- a new style of DRAM that can mount M.2 drives or serial CompactFlash (CFast) cards with support for the SATA 3.0 interface. Interestingly, however, this concept isn't as goofy as it might sound -- right now, there are very few mini-ITX boards with support for full-sized M.2 cards. In theory, this kind of solution would give users with extremely minimal upgrade space enough... Read more...
Samsung on Tuesday announced that it is now mass producing what it considers the most advanced 4Gb (Gigabit) DDR3 memory based on a new 20nm manufacturing process technology. Using Samsung's innovations in manufacturing, the South Korean chip maker says it's been able to improve yields by more than 30 percent compared to 25nm DDR3, and more than double that of 30nm-class DDR3. As Samsung explains it, the process of scaling DRAM memory where each cell consists of a capacitor and a transistor linked to one another has become significantly more difficult than NAND flash memory where cells don't require a capacitor. To overcome this hurdle, Samsung tweaked its design and manufacturing technology... Read more...
It's a done deal, and just like that, two have become one in the memory universe. Micron and Elpida have just announced the closing of their merger, which has Micron acquiring 100% of Elpida's equity. The deal was initially hammered out in July of 2012, and just now was completed. In a related transaction, Micron also announced today the completion of its acquisition of a 24 percent share of Rexchip Electronics Corporation from Powerchip Technology Corporation and certain of its affiliates. The transactions will be recorded for accounting purposes as being effective at 11:59 p.m., Tokyo time, on July 31, 2013. Elpida's assets include a 300 millimeter (mm) DRAM fabrication facility located in... Read more...
With all the attention paid to smartphones and tablets, it's sometimes easy to forget that Samsung also produces some of the parts that end up in these mobile devices. In fact, the South Korean company announced that it's begun pumping out what it claims is the industry's first ultra high-speed, 4Gb (gigabit), LPDDR3 mobile memory built on a 20nm-class technology. According to Samsung, the major upside with these mobile chips is that they offer comparable performance to standard DRAM found in desktop and laptop computers. The speedy chips transmit data at up to 2,133 megabits per second (Mbps) per pin, which is more than double the performance 800Mbps LPDDR2. Samsung says it's possible to transmit... Read more...
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