Elpida Does Not Get Enough GDDR5 from Winbond – Report

Winbond Prefers NOR Flash to GDDR5

by Anton Shilov
04/07/2010 | 12:34 PM

Elpida Memory, the largest vendor of dynamic random access memory (DRAM) in Japan, does not get enough GDDR5 chips from Winbond, as the latter prefers to produce NOR flash memory due to higher profit margins, a report from a Taiwanese web-site claims.

 

Elpida has demanded at least 10 000 wafer starts for GDDR5 per month when it outsourced production of certain GDDR5 memory chips to Winbond in mid-2009. However, according to a report from DigiTimes, Winbond can only provide 5000 GDDR5 wafers per month as its production capacities are busy making more profitable NOR flash memory.

What is surprising is that Winbond was only expected to start manufacturing of GDDR5 memory for Elpida in the second quarter of 2010, which started days ago. Perhaps, Winbond had notified its partner about inability to quickly ramp up scheduled manufacturing of GDDR5 in April or even in the coming months. Neither of the companies have commented on the report.

Elpida’s first GDDR5 memory chip will sport 1Gb density (two I/O configurations available: 32Mb x32 and 64Mb x16) and will be able to operate at 6GHz effective clock-speed (1500MHz). The new graphic memory device marks Elpida's first step in the GDDR market. Elpida got GDDR5 technologies from bankrupt Elpida.

Both Elpida and Winbond are working hard to minimize output of commodity DRAM products and have announced plans to focus on premium types of memory, including GDDR, mobile RAM, RDRAM, XDR, special purpose DRAM as well as NOR flash (in case of Winbond).