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Samsung Electronics has announced that it had begun mass production of DDR2 memory operating at 667MHz, later than some rivals. Being the world’s largest memory maker, Samsung is capable of significantly increasing competition in the market, which is likely to drive pricing of PC2-5300 memory downwards.

“We’ve been the clear leader in state-of-the-art, DDR2 solutions, having delivered hundreds of millions of DDR2 components since we initiated volume shipments last April. We’re driving the production of our 667MHz devices using our 90 nanometer process technology on 300mm wafers,” said Tom Quinn, senior vice president, memory sales and marketing, Samsung Semiconductor.

Samsung’s DDR2-667 is available now in 256Mb and 512Mb versions. A 1Gb version is expected late this year, according to Samsung.

Other memory makers, such as Elpida, have been producing chips certified to run at up to 800MHz for some time now.

DDR2 memory at 667MHz with mainstream latency settings delivers generally higher performance compared to the DDR memory at 400MHz with advanced settings. Given that currently Intel’s, who has the largest market share when it comes to processors and supporting chipsets, latest products support PC2-5300 memory, the demand for such modules and chips definitely exists.

Late last year, research analyst iSuppli Corporation projected that the DDR2 market will grow from 35% of total DRAM production this year to 68% in 2006.

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