Samsung Electronics has started volume production of 3-bit-per-cell (3bpc) 64Gb flash memory chips made using 20nm-class process technology. The new products will allow the company to produce lower-cost memory cards or flash drives with higher capacity.
Samsung’s 20nm-class, 64Gb 3-bit NAND has a 60 percent higher productivity level than 30nm-class, 32Gb 3-bit NAND. The device also offers improved performance by applying Toggle DDR 1.0 specifications, compared to those of SDR based 30nm-class NAND chips.
The availability of storage 8GB (64Gb) NAND flash chips, Samsung hopes, will trigger widespread acceptance of Toggle DDR-based high-performance flash in USB flash drives SD cards, as well as smart phones and SSDs, while replacing previous 4Gb (32Gb) devices in the market. It is not likely, however, that 3bpc multi-level cell (MLC) flash chips will actually become widespread on the market of solid-state drives due to reliability concerns unless Samsung had implemented special mechanisms that can sustain or even increase the amount of writes per cell in 3bpc MLC flash on the level of 10 000 times.
“Samsung has repeatedly provided the market with leading-edge NAND flash solutions, including the introduction of 30nm-class, 32Gb 3-bit NAND flash last November. By now entering into full production of 20nm-class 64Gb 3-bit devices, we expect to accelerate adoption of our high-performance NAND solutions that use Toggle DDR technology, for applications that also require high-density NAND," said Seijin Kim, vice president of flash memory planning/enabling at Samsung Electronics.
Following the production of 20nm-class 32Gb MLC NAND in April, Samsung expands its product offerings at the leading-edge 20nm-class process node with the introduction of the 20nm-class 64Gb 3-bit NAND.
The company's main rivals - Sandisk and Toshiba - are likely to follow the largest NAND producer in the coming weeks with their 20nm products, according to earlier announced roadmap.