by Anton Shilov
01/29/2012 | 05:47 AM
SanDisk, a leading supplier of NAND flash-based products, said that it had begun production of NAND flash memory using 19nm process technology, as planned, back in Q4. The company actually pins a lot of hopes onto the new type of flash memory and asserts that it will bring better performance, lower cost and even other.
"We began production of 19nm technology in Q4, and it will ramp throughout 2012. As we explained previously, NAND scaling is becoming more complex for the industry, resulting in a lower rate of cost reduction from technology transition. The 19nm technology will generate a lower cost reduction rate compared to what we achieved with the 24nm transition," said Sanjay Mehrotra, chief executive officer of SanDisk, during a conversation with financial analysts.
The head of the company disclosed that presently SanDisk makes multi-level cell (MLC, 2 bits per cell) and three-bits per cell (TLC) NAND memory using 19nm fabrication process. He did not elaborate about exact yields, but said that the new technology is on track to boost SanDisk's overall bit growth in 2012.
Mr. Mehrotra admits that TLC NAND flash memory is at present not suitable for business-critical enterprise applications, but is suitable for consumer-class solid-state drives, which corresponds to the vision of Ryan Petersen, the head of OCZ Technology, a major maker of SSDs.
"We will be looking at opportunities for 3bpc on the client SSD side. Enterprise SSD, I fully expect that to continue to be on 2bpc, given the high performance, the high reliability requirement of enterprise application," said the chief exec of SanDisk.