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SK Hynix Starts Mass-Producing World's First 128-Layer 4D NAND, Working on 176-Layer NAND

SK hynix Inc. announced today that it has developed and started mass-producing the world's first 128-Layer 1 Tb (Terabit) TLC (Triple-Level Cell) 4D NAND Flash, only eight months after the Company announced the 96-Layer 4D NAND Flash last year.

The 128-Layer 1 Tb NAND chip offers the industry's highest vertical stacking with more than 360 billion NAND cells, each of which stores 3 bits, per one chip. To achieve this, SK hynix applied innovative technologies, such as "ultra-homogeneous vertical etching technology," "high-reliability multi-layer thin-film cell formation technology," and ultra-fast low-power circuit design, to its own 4D NAND technology.

The new product provides the industry's highest density of 1 Tb for TLC NAND Flash. A number of companies including SK hynix have developed 1 Tb QLC (Quad-Level Cell) NAND products, but SK hynix is the first to commercialize the 1 Tb TLC NAND Flash. TLC accounts for more than 85% of the NAND Flash market with excellent performance and reliability.

Kingston Introduces Next-Gen KC2000 NVMe PCIe SSD

Kingston Digital, Inc., the Flash memory affiliate of Kingston Technology Company, Inc., a world leader in memory products and technology solutions, today announced KC2000, its next generation M.2 NVMe PCIe SSD for enterprise and power users. Kingston's KC2000 NVMe PCIe SSD delivers powerful performance using the latest Gen 3.0 x 4 controller and 96-layer 3D TLC NAND. Offering superior read and write speeds up to 3,200 and 2,200MB/s, respectively, KC2000 delivers outstanding performance and endurance, and improves workflow in desktop, workstations and high-performance computing (HPC) systems.

KC2000 is a self-encrypting drive that supports end-to-end data protection using 256-bit AES Hardware-based encryption and allows the usage of independent software vendors with TCG Opal 2.0 security management solutions such as Symantec , McAfee , WinMagic and others. KC2000 also has built-in Microsoft eDrive support, a security storage specification for use with BitLocker.

Intel Receiving $1.3B From Micron for IM Flash Stake

The Intel-Micron divorce in the wake of the former's exit from the joint Im Flash venture has taken some strange turns. However, it seems that Micron is looking to take the entire business out of Intel's hands and keep the manufacturing capacity that was jointly developed and invested in all for themselves, offering Intel anywhere from $1.3B to $1.5B for their stake on the venture - including associated debt of the IMF venture to Intel, which amounts to a cool $1B of that amount. This means that Intel's stake in the venture is being valued at $300 to $500 million.

The only remaining factory that is being operated by both parties is located in Lehi, Utah, and exclusively fabricates 3D XPoint memory, which has only been turned to a consumer and professional product by Intel. The acquisition from Micron means they'll have to fulfill Intel's 3D XPoint orders until 2020, and that they'll be investing on the factory's capacity to produce 2nd generation 3D XPoint for their own product portfolio, as well as post-3D XPoint technologies.

SK Hynix Begins Sampling 96-layer 4D QLC NAND Flash Memory

SK Hynix Inc., announced today that it has delivered samples of new 1Tb (Terabit) QLC (Quadruple Level Cell) product to major SSD (Solid State Drive) Controller companies. The Company applied its own QLC technology to its world's first 96-Layer "CTF (Charge Trap Flash) based 4D (Four-Dimensional) NAND Flash (or 4D NAND)." SK Hynix intends to expand its NAND portfolio to 96-layer-based 1Tb QLC products in time for the QLC market opening and strengthen its responsiveness to the next-generation high-density memory market.

QLC stores four bits of data in one NAND cell, allowing higher density compared to TLC (Triple Level Cell) that stores three bits per cell. Using QLC, it is possible to develop high-density products with cost competitiveness. SK Hynix is able to secure the industry's top-level cost competitiveness through this product, which has reduced the area to less than 90% of the existing 3D-based QLC products.

Intel Packs 3D X-Point and QLC NAND Flash Into a Single SSD: Optane H10

Intel today revealed details about Intel Optane memory H10 with solid-state storage - an innovative device that combines the superior responsiveness of Intel Optane technology with the storage capacity of Intel Quad Level Cell (QLC) 3D NAND technology in a single space-saver M.2 form factor. "Intel Optane memory H10 with solid-state storage features the unique combination of Intel Optane technology and Intel QLC 3D NAND - exemplifying our disruptive approach to memory and storage that unleashes the full power of Intel-connected platforms in a way no else can provide," said Rob Crooke, Intel senior vice president and general manager of the Non-Volatile Memory Solutions Group.

Combining Intel Optane technology with Intel QLC 3D NAND technology on a single M.2 module enables Intel Optane memory expansion into thin and light notebooks and certain space-constrained desktop form factors - such as all-in-one PCs and mini PCs. The new product also offers a higher level of performance not met by traditional Triple Level Cell (TLC) 3D NAND SSDs today and eliminates the need for a secondary storage device.

Team Group Releases Three New Flash Products

Targeting to expand the capacity of our consumers' storage devices, Team Group today releases three new FLASH products. They are the MP34 M.2 solid state drive with PCIe Gen 3.0 x4 high speed interface and the latest NVMe 1.3 protocol, the ELITE A1 high-speed memory card which is specially made for ANDROID devices and 4K video recording, the C188 high-speed flash drive with elegant design and up to 130 MB/s of read/write speed. These products allow consumers to upgrade their PC or mobile devices at ease.

Today, Team Group releases the M.2 solid state drive MP34 that uses PCIe Gen 3.0 x4 high-speed interface and the latest NVMe 1.3 protocol. Connecting to the built-in controller of the chipset and processor through PCI-e bus provides transfer signal without any lag. The transfer performance is remarkable. The transfer speed of MP34 is up to 3000 MB/s, which is 5 times* higher than the SATA III interface. It supports S.M.A.R.T and has built-in smart algorithm, Wear-Leveling technology and Error Correction Code. In addition to bring the SSD to its maximum performance and prolong the service life, it also supports both Intel and AMD platforms. Whether it is installed on a desktop or a laptop, it will offer consumer the finest and smoothest gaming experience.

Kingston Digital Introduces New High Endurance microSD Cards

Kingston Digital, Inc., the Flash memory affiliate of Kingston Technology Company, Inc., a world leader in memory products and technology solutions, today introduced its new High Endurance microSD card. The card is especially designed for write-intensive application use such as home security and surveillance cameras, dash cams and body cams.

As write-intensive applications critically depend on a high level of reliability and performance, Kingston's High Endurance microSD card provides durability, high-storage capacity and prolonged endurance to meet the unique recording demands of security cameras and dash cams. The High Endurance microSD card stores up to 20,000 hours of seamless video recording in full 1080p HD to capture a reliable record of what happens whether at home or on the road.

DigiTimes: Micron, Samsung, SK Hynix to See DRAM, Flash Revenue Fall in 1Q19

DigiTimes is reporting that three of the major DRAM and Flash players in the industry - Micron, Samsung and SK Hynix - are expected to drop an astonishing 26% sequentially on 1Q19 and 29% YoY for 1Q19. The combined revenue drop for the three DRAM and Flash semiconductor giants comes in the face of seasonality and decreasing prices, and the decline continues an already negative 4Q18, which saw a decrease of 18% sequentially and 26% from a year earlier.

With memory pricing facing a continuous decline in recent times, clients are taking a pondered approach towards ordering from manufacturers - an expectation of future savings being the main factor for this. Demand, however, is expected to pick up in 2H19, due to increased demand from end customers, following price-cuts from manufacturers and improved specifications on end-products.

Samsung Launches Industry's First 1TB Embedded Universal Flash Storage

Samsung Electronics, the world leader in advanced memory technology, today announced that it has begun mass producing the industry's first one-terabyte (TB) embedded Universal Flash Storage (eUFS) 2.1, for use in next-generation mobile applications. Just four years after introducing the first UFS solution, the 128-gigabyte (GB) eUFS, Samsung has passed the much-anticipated terabyte threshold in smartphone storage. Smartphone enthusiasts will soon be able to enjoy storage capacity comparable to a premium notebook PC, without having to pair their phones with additional memory cards.

"The 1 TB eUFS is expected to play a critical role in bringing a more notebook-like user experience to the next generation of mobile devices," said Cheol Choi, executive vice president of Memory Sales & Marketing at Samsung Electronics. "What's more, Samsung is committed to assuring the most reliable supply chain and adequate production quantities to support the timely launches of upcoming flagship smartphones in accelerating growth of the global mobile market."

CES 2019: A Closer Look at Patriot's SSDs, Memory, and Flash Drives

A quick trip to see Patriot at CES 2019 netted us a chance to look over a massive number of products from SSDs and DDR4 memory, to flash drives and Micro SD cards. In general, when it comes to anything memory or storage related they had everything but the kitchen sink on hand. That said, let's start with system memory. To begin with, they had their Signature Line on hand which uses a simple black aluminum heatshield and comes in capacities up to 16 GB per module with speeds up to 2666 MHz. For a single 16 GB stick at 2666 MHz the listed the timings at 19-19-19-43. Next was the new Viper Steel DDR4 SODIMMs with capacity that ranged from 8 GB to 32 GB and feature XMP 2.0 support for automatic overclocking. As for speeds they top out at 3000 MHz for these kits. Next up was the Viper RGB memory which comes in speeds of up to 4133 MHz and with timings listed at 19-21-21-41. They are also compatible with motherboard RGB sync applications and have been tested on the latest Intel and AMD platforms. Last but not least were the Viper Steel kits which top out at 4400 MHz with 19-19-19-39 timings.

Toshiba Shows Off 96-Layer BiCS FLASH Alongside Plethora of Enterprise SSDs at CES 2019

During our visit with Toshiba at CES 2019, we were shown not only new technologies that they will be rapidly deploying but a large number of SSDs for various market segments. The biggest draw was their 96-layer BiCS Flash with 4-bit-per-cell quadruple-level cell (QLC) technology. Toshiba is now pushing the boundary for capacity as a single chip device can reach 1.33 Tb (Terabits) while a single package device with 16-dies stacked architecture can reach 2.66 TB. That said, they are already sampling their 1 TB NVMe single package BG4 series SSDs to PC OEM customers in limited quantities.

These latest drives with their new BiCS FLASH technology incorporate everything into a tiny SSD that offers class-leading storage with sequential read performance reaching up to 2250 MB/s. Random read performance can also hit exceptional levels reaching up to 380,000 IOPS. For now, these BG4 based drives are targeted at ultra-thin PC notebooks, IoT embedded systems and will be made available in four capacities including; 128 GB, 256 GB, 512 GB and finally 1 TB. To meet expected demand, Toshiba will also be opening a facility in Japan dedicated to this latest technology in order to bring even higher capacities per NAND module.

Kingston Enhances Award-Winning IronKey D300 Encrypted USB

Kingston Digital, Inc., the Flash memory affiliate of Kingston Technology Company, Inc., a world leader in memory products and technology solutions, has added new features to its recent Cyber Defense 2018 Global Awards winning IronKey D300 encrypted USB Flash drive to improve device management and security. IronKey D300 is FIPS 140-2 Level 3 certified and uses 256-bit AES hardware-based encryption in XTS mode. Shipping next week, a new Serialized version (D300S) with two new features will further enhance the drive's already advanced level of security to safeguard sensitive data.

IronKey D300S will have a unique serial number and bar code on the drive itself, allowing network administrators to simply read or scan the code instead of plugging in the drive. When a drive is deployed, returned or during any physical auditing or asset management of hardware, this feature will make the process more efficient and streamlined. The second feature, a virtual keyboard, enables users to enter a password with clicks of the mouse instead of using a physical keyboard, thereby providing a greater level of protection against any possible keylogging when using D300S on other computers.

Patched NVFlash Allows RTX 20-series FE Cards to be Flashed with Custom BIOS

BIOS modder Vipeax has released a special patched version of NVFlash (version 5.527.0), the utility that allows you to extract and flash the video BIOS of your NVIDIA GeForce graphics card. This special version lets you to bypass NVIDIA restrictions and flash GeForce RTX 20-series Founders Edition (FE) graphics cards with BIOS ROMs of custom-design graphics cards. The official versions of NVFlash that support "Turing" GPUs report a "board ID mismatch" error when trying to do this, and an additional CLI parameter that made it ignore this warning, was removed by NVIDIA, effectively walling off Founders Edition cards from BIOS cross-flashing. You still can't flash the card with a BIOS you modified, because of NVIDIA's digital-signature restriction that has been in place since "Pascal," however, this new change could come handy if you want to flash your FE card with the BIOS of a custom-design card that is largely based on NVIDIA's reference-design PCB.

PC enthusiasts look to flash their Founders Edition cards with BIOS ROMs of custom-design graphics cards by other NVIDIA add-in card partners, mainly to increase power limits that allow the GPU to sustain boost frequencies better, and increase overclocking headroom. As an obligatory word of caution, use of NVFlash isn't covered by product warranties, and you use it at your own risk, especially when cross-flashing between cards that might have subtle differences. We manually checked the modified executable (not just Virustotal) and it doesn't contain any malware.
DOWNLOAD: NVIDIA NVFlash with Board ID Mismatch Disabled

New NVFlash Released With Turing Support

With the latest release of NVIDIA's NVFlash, version 5.513.0, users can now read and write the BIOS on Turing based graphics cards. This includes the RTX 2080 Ti, 2080, and 2070. While this may seem mundane at first, due to the different power limits between graphics cards, there is some hope that cross flashing of the BIOS could result in tangible performance gains.

DOWNLOAD: NVIDIA NVFlash v5.513.0

Kingston Partners with Ontrack for Advanced Data Erasure Solutions

Kingston Technology Company, Inc., a world leader in memory products and technology solutions, is now partnering with Ontrack, a leading provider of data recovery and erasure services. Kingston customers will now be able to use Ontrack's data erasure services at advantageous rates. Ontrack offers an award-winning software-suite and provides technology services to help legal, corporate and government customers as well as consumers to remove data efficiently and cost-effectively. Through this powerful alliance between two security vendors, Ontrack supports Kingston customers in solving complex data GDPR challenges through cutting-edge erasure solutions.

The lack of secure deletion, be it through human or technical error or faulty erasure procedures, can lead to drastic impacts on businesses and organisations. This is felt now more than ever before with the stringent requirements of data protection demanded by the recently enforced GDPR. Permanently deleting data takes time and resources, and data that is not completely expunged is vulnerable to exposure. To increase the security of anyone's data, a secure, verified data destruction process is required.

ADATA Announces IUSP33F PCIe BGA SSD

ADATA Technology, a leading manufacturer of high-performance DRAM modules and NAND flash products, today launched the ADATA IUSP33F PCIe ball grid array (BGA) solid state drive (SSD). The SSD sports a form factor that is 80 percent more compact than M.2 2242 SSDs. Combined with a PCIe Gen3x2 interface and 3D Flash memory for excellent performance and durability, the IUSP33F is an ideal solution for slim-form-factor tablets, notebooks, hybrids, mini-PCs, thin clients, and wearables.

"We are thrilled to be introducing the new IUSP33F SSD, a compact solution that will enable next-generation tablets, ultrabooks, and other slim devices, but without compromising on performance and reliability," said Hedi Huang, Sales Directorof ADATA. "But the versatility of the IUSP33F goes beyond just these applications, and are also well-suited for new emerging applications in areas such as robotics, augmented and virtual reality, and automotive.

TrendForce: Contract Prices in NAND Flash Market Will Keep Falling in 2H18 Due to Oversupply and Weak Seasonal Demand

The latest analysis on the NAND Flash market by DRAMeXchange, a division of TrendForce, forecasts that the ASP of NAND Flash will drop by around 10% QoQ respectively in 3Q18 and 4Q18. Although 3Q18 heralds the traditional peak season for the sales of consumer electronics, the growth of the end market demand has been weaker than anticipated. At the same time, the supply of 3D-NAND Flash continues to expand.

DRAMeXchange points out that the main reason behind the falling prices is oversupply at various levels. First, the annual shipments for smartphones this year are expected to be just on par with last year's. The replacement demand for smartphones has been sluggish due to the lack of differentiation among products in terms of hardware specifications. Second, notebook shipments were very strong in 1H18, so the seasonal shipment growth for notebooks in 2H18 will be lackluster compared with the growth in the year's first half as the base period. Third, the competition is very intense in the server SSD market. Although demand for server systems is growing steadily, there is an oversupply of server SSDs because too many suppliers are engaging in this profitable segment. Finally, NAND Flash suppliers have raised their output forecasts as they have expanded their production capacity and improved the yield rates of their 64/72-layer 3D-NAND production. Given the above factors that have led to a persistent oversupply, contract prices of various NAND Flash products will remain weak through 2H18.

Valve Reportedly Bringing Flash Sales Back from the Dead

It's been two years since Valve decided to take away the excitement of their flash sales out of the equation. The thought-process was that by having sales go uninterrupted from the beginning through to the end of each sale period would maximize chances of users being able to find it in their budgets - and in their time - more chances to purchase said games. However, one thing is for sure: that means that for users who see the sale in the first day, they've really seen it all.

Valve News Network's Tyler McVicker says the flash sales are returning in a different way now. This time, developers will be able to choose how long they want each game's flash sale to last: 6, 8, 10, or 12 hours, meaning Steam's front page will likely be updated every hour. This is both good and bad, as we've seen; however, it seems that Valve is erring towards the side of excitement and daily viewing of flash sales as being quantifiably better than the alternative. For one, I can see that users that see a flash sale are much more likely to do some impulse buys than if they know a sale will last for a long time. It's basic psychology here.

Western Digital Introduces Ultrastar DC SS530 Dual-port SAS SSD

Western Digital Corporation, a data technology leader, today introduced the new Ultrastar DC SS530 SAS SSD, the company's highest-density drive and the fastest dual-port SAS SSD in the market¹, enabling server and storage array manufacturers to offer customers substantially lower data center TCO for Fast Data applications. By doubling maximum capacity of the previous generation to 15.36TB within the same 2.5-inch 15-mm form factor, drive storage density also doubles, giving IT managers the potential to reduce the number of drives deployed, consolidate servers and open up valuable rack space for improved CapEx and OpEx costs.

Developed in partnership with Intel , the Ultrastar DC SS530 is based on a trusted third-generation platform that has been previously qualified at most major OEMs worldwide. It offers consistent performance and reliability to meet the rigorous demands of today's toughest data center workloads. Designed with a 12Gb/s SAS interface, and available in capacities from 400GB to 15.36TB, the Ultrastar DC SS530 delivers up to 440,000 random read and 320,000 random write IOPS - providing rapid access to "hot" enterprise data for higher productivity and operational efficiency.

Toshiba Develops 96-layer BiCS FLASH with QLC Technology

Toshiba Memory Corporation, the world leader in memory solutions, today announced that it has developed a prototype sample of 96-layer BiCS FLASH, its proprietary 3D flash memory, with 4-bit-per-cell (quad level cell, QLC) technology that boosts single-chip memory capacity to the highest level yet achieved.Toshiba Memory will start to deliver samples to SSD and SSD controller manufacturers for evaluation from the beginning of September, and expects to start mass production in 2019.

The advantage of QLC technology is pushing the bit count for data per memory cell from three to four and significantly expanding capacity. The new product achieves the industry's maximum capacity of 1.33 terabits for a single chip which was jointly developed with Western Digital Corporation. This also realizes an unparalleled capacity of 2.66 terabytes with a 16-chip stacked architecture in one package. The huge volumes of data generated by mobile terminals and the like continue to increase with the spread of SNS and progress in IoT, and the need to analyze and utilize that data in real time is expected to increase dramatically. That will require even faster than HDD, larger capacity storage and QLC products using the 96-layer process will contribute a solution.

ADATA Unveils the UV240 USB Flash Drive

ADATA today launched the UV240 USB Flash drive, adding to its extensive range of portable storage devices. The UV240 works in USB 2.0 and is offered in capacities up to 64 GB. It features a convenient flip-cap capless design alongside a quick-slide mechanism for maximum usability.

ADATA remains committed to its USB Flash drive global leadership role and will continue releasing new models as market needs evolve. ADATA designers have long preferred USB Flash drives with no cap, as with such a design there is less clutter and fewer parts to potentially misplace. The UV240 utilizes a convenient flip-cap design, which does not only prevent you from misplacing the cap, it also allows it to be easily opened with the flick of a thumb. This intuitive design helps make the UV240 extremely satisfying to use on the go.

Patriot Launches Ultimate TRINITY 3-in-1 Adaptive USB Flash Drive

PATRIOT, a global leader in performance memory, SSDs, gaming peripherals, and flash storage solutions, today announced the brand new 3-in-1 USB Flash Drive, the TRINITY, a ground-breaking design of an adaptive USB Flash Drive. Users with multiple personal electronics devices such as a Smartphone, tablet, and laptop encounter a fundamental problem: "How do you move data between these devices?" Consumers have demand for multi-platform data storage and it is only effective if it can be used inexpensively and with great efficiency. Patriot Memory understands this inconvenience and has proposed an ultimate solution to consumers.

"Patriot Memory always pushes the limit when it comes to how our products can benefit the end users, that's why the TRINITY drive has been created, and its creative and unique 3-in-1 design should be second to none in the market," said Roger Shinmoto, Vice President of Product Development. The TRINITY USB Flash Drive features a USB Type-A, Type-C, and micro-B connectors all on a single USB drive housing. You don't need to use any adapter cables as this drive comes with three of the most common USB formats on a single tiny flash drive. This allows TRINITY users to store and transfer data easily between different devices without any hassle.

Kingston Digital Announces New Canvas Series of Flash Cards

Kingston Digital, Inc., the Flash memory affiliate of Kingston Technology Company, Inc., a world leader in memory products and technology solutions, announced today its new series of 'Canvas' Flash memory cards. Canvas will offer three different variations in both SD and microSD cards: Select, Go, and React to suit consumers' needs.

With the Canvas line of memory cards, users and creators can choose the best storage medium available. The cards are designed to provide the reliability, flexibility and performance needed for any project. Along with tested durability, users will have the confidence to bring Canvas cards wherever their imagination takes them.

China's Tsinghua Unigroup to Manufacture 3D NAND Flash for Intel

In a bid to ensure sufficient supply of NAND flash memory to meet the growing demands of not just PC, but also smartphone markets, China's Tsinghua Unigroup and Intel are in talks to license-manufacture 64-layer 3D NAND flash, based on existing IMFlash Technologies designs. IMFlash is a joint-venture between Intel and Micron Technology. Tsinghua Unigroup is one of the biggest beneficiaries of the Chinese Government's ambitious plan to invest RMB 1 trillion (USD $158 billion) over the next five years, to increase China's semiconductor self-sufficiency to 70 percent, by 2025.

The move will significantly increase supply of NAND flash memory, and is seen as a market threat to Korean NAND flash giants Samsung and SK Hynix, and Japanese Toshiba. IMFlash Technology released its first 64-layer 3D NAND flash to the market in 2017, and is currently developing a 96-layer 3D NAND flash chip, which, along with newer 10 nm-class silicon fabrication process, could double densities over the current 64-layer chips.

Intel Reimagines Data Center Storage with New 3D NAND SSDs

Today, Intel announced the Intel SSD DC P4510 Series for data center applications. The P4510 Series uses 64-layer TLC Intel 3D NAND to enable end users to do more per server, support broader workloads and deliver space-efficient capacity. The P4510 Series enables up to four times more terabytes per server and delivers up to 10 times better random read latency at 99.99 percent quality of service than previous generations. The drive can also deliver up to double the input-output operations per second (IOPS) per terabyte. The 1 and 2TB capacities have been shipping to cloud service providers (CSPs) in high volume since August 2017, and the 4 and 8TB capacities are now available to CSPs and channel customers. All capacities are in the 2.5-inch 15 mm U.2 form factor and utilize a PCIe NVMe 3.0 x4 connection.

To accelerate performance and simplify management of the P4510 Series PCIe SSDs and other PCIe SSDs, Intel is also delivering two new technologies that work together to replace legacy storage hardware. Intel Xeon Scalable processors include Intel Volume Management Device (VMD), enabling robust management such as surprise insertion/removal and LED management of PCIe SSDs directly connected to the CPU. Building on this functionality, Intel Virtual RAID on CPU (VROC) uses Intel VMD to provide RAID to PCIe SSDs. By replacing RAID cards with Intel VROC, customers are able to enjoy up to twice the IOPs performance and up to a 70 percent cost savings with PCIe SSDs directly attached to the CPU, improving customer's return on their investments in SSD-based storage.
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