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 Post subject: Intel-Micron joint venture to improve NAND flash supplies
PostPosted: Tue Nov 22, 2005 8:20 pm 

Joined: Tue Jun 14, 2005 6:12 pm
Posts: 82
iSuppli believes that Intel and Micron Technology ‘s move to establish a flash-memory production joint venture, dubbed IM Flash Technologies LLC, will help mitigate NAND supply constraints that now are plaguing the market.

NAND availability has been reduced since Apple in September rolled out its flash-based iPod nano and entered a deal to buy as much as 40% of Samsung Electronics' NAND output in the second half of 2005. iSuppli estimates that Apple could account for as high as 25% of global NAND sales in 2006.

With IM Flash Technologies dedicated to serving Apple's soaring demand, the new joint venture will help Apple secure its supply, thus reducing shortages throughout the NAND market. This deal is particularly positive for small and mid-sized NAND buyers, which are finding it extremely difficult to source sufficient quantities of NAND chips at this time.

Flashy growth for NAND

Driven by usage in new consumer-electronics products like the iPod nano, the NAND-type flash market is set to undergo tremendous growth in the coming years.

The global NAND market will reach US$15.4 billion in 2006, up from US$10.8 billion in 2005, according to iSuppli's latest forecast. From 2004 to 2009, NAND flash memory revenue will rise at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 32%. Unit growth will be even more impressive, increasing by a 185% CAGR from 2004 to 2009.

This makes NAND the fastest-growing segment of entire semiconductor memory business, according to iSuppli.

Competitive challenges

Although iSuppli expects that IM Flash Technologies potentially could emerge as a competitive threat to the incumbent NAND flash suppliers, including Samsung and Toshiba, the new company will require at least one year before it reaches the critical mass needed to compete head to head with the established players.

Furthermore, the manufacturing cost per megabyte is the most important factor determining success in the commodity NAND market. To compete successfully, IM Flash Technologies will have to prove its cost effectiveness to the market quickly.

Yet another challenge for IM Flash Technologies will be the rapid rise in NAND flash densities.

Toshiba and Samsung already are ramping up production of NAND flash chips with a density of 8Gbit. Samsung in 2005 introduced a 16Gbit NAND chip, which will be followed by 32Gbit device in 2006. IM Flash Technologies is expected to offer a maximum density of only 8Gbits in 2006.

Benefits for Intel and Micron

On the plus side for IM Flash Technologies, the company will be able to leverage Intel's multi level cell (MLC) technology, which boosts flash memory density. In general, the establishment of the joint venture benefits Intel by giving it a second line of non-volatile memory beyond its existing family of NOR-type flash products.

As for Micron, the company gains the capital investment needed to increase its NAND market share. This is very much in line with Micron's strategy to diversify from its core DRAM business.



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 Post subject: Re: Intel-Micron joint venture to improve NAND flash supplies
PostPosted: Fri Oct 19, 2018 8:31 pm 

Joined: Wed Nov 22, 2017 6:55 pm
Posts: 88
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