by Anton Shilov
05/25/2010 | 10:58 PM
The global downturn of economy seems to be getting easier and the demand towards high-performance computer components is finally picking up. However, since makers of chips have refocused parts of their manufacturing capacities onto devices that will sell in a tough environment, there is a danger than in the coming months there will be shortages of advanced chips. However, it is not evident on the market of DRAM and SSD, according to OCZ.
“While we are not currently experiencing any supply issues we are constantly planning to avoid them at the same time,” said Alex Mei, vice president of marketing at OCZ.
Recently it transpired that Intel Corp. cannot supply enough 32nm code-named Arrandale processors for mobile applications due to high demand towards certain models and the fact that Intel still has not initiated 32nm production at certain fabs. In addition, Advanced Micro Devices, apparently, cannot ship enough of its latest chipsets and even certain higher-end microprocessors to fulfill the demand. It is also not a secret that ATI, graphics business unit of AMD, and Nvidia Corp. ran into supply issues with 40nm-based products due to problems at Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company since the latter had implemented aggressive cost-cutting measures, which, among other things, slowed down the ramp up of 40nm node.
There are reports that companies like Winbond had decided to refocus from dynamic random access memory (DRAM) to NOR flash in order to boost profitability; besides, the demand towards DRAM in general has consistently left behind supply in the recent months, which caused uptick of prices. Nonetheless, at least OCZ Technology, a leading supplier of premium DRAM modules and solid-state drives (SSDs) does not experience any issues with shortages of high-end chips.
“We currently build so many DRAM modules and SSDs that it is critical that we have a solid supply channel in place; we have been setting this up for years and are able to maintain a steady supply to meet our customer demand,” said Mr. Mei.
In order to further avoid supply-related issues, OCZ has implemented certain measures. For example, mainstream products are developed with the aim to have multiple components suppliers.
“We engineer our consumer products so we are not dependent on a single NAND type and for our enterprise clients we work closely with them so we have plenty of stock in place to meet their forecasted demand,” explained the high-ranking executive.