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Phison Announces Successful Deployment of the World's First PCI-SIG Certified PCIe 5.0 Redriver IC PS7101

Phison Electronics Corp., a leading provider of NAND controller and NAND storage solutions integration services, announced today that it is successfully deploying the world's first PCIe 5.0 Redriver IC PS7101 certified by the PCI-SIG Association to help solve the compatibility problems of high-speed signal transmission between CPU (Central Processing Unit) and peripheral devices (such as SSD and graphics card, etc.). In the generation of PCIe 5.0 high-speed transmission, Redriver ICs will be required in devices such as desktop computers, servers, industrial computers, cables, and notebook computers. Depending on the degree of signal attenuation and the number of compensation channels, each system device will require 2 to 16 Redriver ICs. According to market research agencies, high-speed transmission signal enhancement ICs (including Redriver and Retimer ICs) will reach a market size of 50 million per year in 2025.

With the vigorous development of massive data, artificial intelligence, and cloud computing, demand for high-speed data transmission continues to rise. The CPU is the core of high-speed signal transmission. Under the leadership of CPU chip suppliers such as Intel and AMD, the transmission interface of the system has ushered the PCIe 5.0 generation, and the single-lane transmission speed reaching 32 Gbps per second, which is twice that of the previous generation PCIe 4.0. However, in the high-speed transmission environment of PCIe 5.0, compatibility issues such as signal attenuation and noise effects on the motherboard have become common problems and challenges faced by all system integrators.

Western Digital to Enter Mass Production of 162-Layer NAND This Year

Last week, Micron revealed its NAND flash plans and so did Western Digital during its investors day. The different NAND flash manufacturers use similar, but far from identical ways to manufacture their NAND flash and WD is working together with Kioxia and the two are using a process called bit column stacked or BiCS NAND. This year the two companies will move to its sixth generation of BiCS NAND which is stacking 162-layers of NAND flash. Most of their competitors are already at 176-layer stacks, although WD and Kioxia still deliver the same capacity NAND chips as its competitors. WD claims that their die size is smaller than the competition, which could be an advantage due to more dies per wafer.

In its presentation, WD listed a single wafer capacity of 100 TB, which is an increase from around 70 TB per wafer in 2020. Although it's not something we can verify, WD claims to have the world's best charge trap cell, which the company claims leads to higher performance compared to its competitors. The slide provided by WD claims a 20 MB/s lead of the competition at 60 MB/s vs. 40 MB/s. Although Western Digital and Kioxia claim to have to invest less to increase their capacity, it would appear that they're behind the competition when it comes to the amount of layers they can stack. The two are only planning what they call BiCS+ at over 200-layers for 2024, which is well over a year behind Micron. The roadmap stretches all the way to 2032, when we should apparently be seeing 500-layer NAND flash, assuming everything goes according to plan. The first BiCS+ NAND will be for datacenter products and WD claims that their first product should see a 60 percent increase in transfer speeds, a 15 percent increase in program bandwidth and a 55 percent increase in bit growth per wafer over the current BiCS6 NAND.

Micron Reveals 232-layer NAND Flash During Investors Day

During its investors day yesterday, Micron revealed its 232-layer NAND Flash, which for now is the most advanced of its kind. Micron is using what the company calls CMOS Under Array or CuA as the platform to build a pair of TLC stacks on top of, for a total of 232-layers. Each stacked NAND Flash chip is said to have a capacity of 1 Terabit, or 128 GB, so we're not seeing any new capacity increases at this point, compared to the competition, but Micron is promising increased bandwidth node-over-node, so we might end up seeing better performance compared to its competitors. The new NAND Flash is supposed to be optimised for SSDs and other "managed" NAND, such as eMMC and UFS.

Micron also revealed an updated NAND Flash roadmap, with the company planning even more 200 plus layer products before moving to 300 and 400-layer stacks of NAND in the future. The 300-layer stacks are already under structural development, whereas the 400-layer products are still in the very early stages of research. The new 232-layer products are said to go into mass production towards the end of this year, so we shouldn't expect to see products based on Micron's 232-layer NAND until sometime in 2023.

TrendForce: Demand for Consumer Electronics Sluggish, NAND Flash Wafer Pricing Leads Downturn in May

According to TrendForce research, looking at NAND Flash wafers, the pricing of which more sensitively reflects the market, suppliers are increasingly motivated to cut prices in exchange for sales due to weak retail demand since March and a more conservative outlook for shipments of other end products. The price of NAND Flash wafers is expected to begin falling in May and the supply of NAND Flash will gradually overtake demand in 2H22. The price decline of NAND Flash wafers in 3Q22 may reach 5~10%.

At the same time, TrendForce indicates that February's contamination incident at Kioxia was expected to tighten the market in 2Q22 and 3Q22. However, as a consequence of rising inflation and the war between Russia and Ukraine, market demand for consumer products in the traditional peak season of the second half of the year is trending conservative and the prices of client SSD, eMMC, and UFS in 3Q22 will be flat compared to 2Q22, breaking from the original expectation that prices may rise. In terms of enterprise SSDs, as demand for data centers remains strong, no significant correction in demand has yet been observed. However, as the overall NAND Flash market gradually moves into oversupply, prices will only grow slightly by approximately 0~5% in 3Q22.

Transcend Introduces Industrial-Grade 112-Layer 3D NAND SSDs with DRAM Cache

Transcend, released its industrial-grade 112-layer 3D NAND SSDs designed with DRAM cache. The outstanding random speeds and endurance are ready to serve the 5G communication and AIoT markets as digital transformation continues apace. Smart infrastructures have been deployed globally, and the demands for IoT, edge computing, and industrial automation heightened. Transcend's storage solutions are expected to satisfy these critical missions.

Transcend SSDs are built with high-quality 112-layer flash memory and a DRAM cache, which temporarily stores data, shortening the data processing time and increasing random read speed. As the data can be accessed on the DRAM cache instead of the flash, the number of NAND flash being written is reduced, prolonging the lifespan of flash memory while increasing the drive endurance. The drives come with a PCIe and SATA III 6 Gb/s interface, covering various form factors including 2.5", M.2, mSATA, and half-slim types. With 3K P/E cycles and capacities of up to 4 TB, the SSDs are capable of working under an extended temperature range (-20°C~75°C). Wide-temperature (-40°C~85°C) models are available to withstand harsh industrial conditions.

MaxLinear to Acquire Silicon Motion, a major SSD controller manufacturer

MaxLinear, Inc. a leading provider of radio frequency (RF), analog and mixed-signal integrated circuits for broadband, connectivity, and infrastructure markets, and Silicon Motion, a global leader in NAND flash controllers for solid state storage devices, announced today that they have entered into a definitive agreement under which MaxLinear will acquire Silicon Motion in a cash and stock transaction that values the combined company at $8 billion in enterprise value. In the merger, each American Depositary Share (ADS) of Silicon Motion, which represents four ordinary shares of Silicon Motion, will receive $93.54 in cash and 0.388 shares of MaxLinear common stock, for total per ADS consideration of $114.34 (based on MaxLinear's May 4, 2022 closing price). The strategic business combination is anticipated to drive transformational scale, create a diversified technology portfolio, significantly expand the combined company's total addressable market, and create a highly profitable cash generating semiconductor leader.

Upon completion of the acquisition, the combined company will have a highly diversified technology platform with strong positions across the broadband, connectivity, infrastructure, and storage end markets. The combination of MaxLinear's RF, analog/mixed-signal, and processing capabilities with Silicon Motion's market leading NAND flash controller technology completes a total technology stack which fully captures end-to-end platform functionality and accelerates the company's expansion into enterprise, consumer, and many other adjacent growth markets. Combined revenues are expected to be more than $2 billion annually and are supported by the technology breadth to address a total market opportunity of roughly $15 billion.

Samsung Announces UFS 4.0 to Deliver up to 4,200 MB/s Read, 2,800 MB/s Write Speeds for Memory Cards

Samsung has announced the implementation of the latest JEDEC standard specification with the adoption of UFS (Universal Flash Storage) standard 4.0. The new standard offers a number of improvements over the previous UFS 3.1 specification related to either performance or power savings. The new standard increases speeds of up to 23.2 Gbps per lane, double that of the previous UFS 3.1 standard. Additionally, UFS 4.0 unlocks sequential read speeds as high as 6.0 MB/s per mA - a 46% improvement over the previous spec, promising decreased battery drain even as workload time is reduced.

Samsung's UFS 4.0 implementation will leverage the company's 7th Gen V-NAND alongside a proprietary controller, which should ultimately enable speeds of up to 4,200 MB/s. Sequential write speeds are nothing to scoff at either, promising up to 2,800 MB/s. The improved performance doesn't translate to increased package sizes, however, as UFS 4.0 will be distributed in compact packages with a maximum dimension of 11 mm x 13 mm x 1 mm for more effective space utilization and design convenience - with capacities reaching the 1 TB per package. Mass production is expected in 3Q2022. Samsung expects its new UFS 4.0-based products to deliver new experiences with increased data throughput of 5G smartphones, future automotive applications, and even AR and VR.

SMART Modular Technologies Announces Next Generation of ME2 Flash

SMART Modular Technologies, Inc. ("SMART"), a division of SGH and a global leader in memory solutions, solid-state drive (SSD) and hybrid storage products announces the next generation of its DuraFlash ME2 family of SATA SSD products, which includes industry-standard M.2 2242, M.2 2280, mSATA, Slim SATA and 2.5" form factors. These SSDs are available in both industrial and commercial temperature grades and have versions that implement SMART's SafeDATA power-loss, data-protection technology for graceful handling of power fluctuations and sudden power loss events.

The new ME2 SSDs incorporate the latest generation 3D NAND-technology and SMART Modular's proprietary NVMSentry firmware to deliver high performance SSD products with endurance up to one drive writes per day (DWPD) for five years using JEDEC JESD219A enterprise endurance workload. The new NAND device offers better cost per bit over previous 64-layer and 96-layer NAND generations without sacrificing performance and reliability.

Solidigm introduces the industry's most advanced PCIe 4.0 SSD family, optimized for cloud and enterprise workloads

Today Solidigm is expanding its performance-optimized D7 Product Series with new solid-state storage drives (SSDs)—the D7-P5520 and the D7-P5620—for data center and enterprise use. These drives are optimized for real-world compute and storage server workloads and are available in an extended range of form factors and capacities. They offer accelerated performance and reduced total cost of ownership (TCO) by enabling a smaller storage footprint and lower power consumption. The D7-P5520 (designed for read-intensive and light mixed workloads), and the D7-P5620 (designed for mixed workloads), are the first family of products being introduced by Solidigm, which launched as a standalone company in December 2021.

The D7 Series comprises the industry's most advanced PCIe 4.0 SSD family of products given their capacity offerings, breadth of form factors and optimized performance capabilities. These SSDs are optimized for real-world workloads and reflect insights gained from deep technical engagements with leading cloud service providers, OEMs, and storage innovators. Designed and tested with zero tolerance for data errors, consistently durable IOPS and QoS, and with near-zero lifetime performance degradation, they can be deployed with the utmost confidence.

TEAMGROUP Announces Industrial 745 SSD Series

For many years, TEAMGROUP has been developing high-quality products for industrial use and automation applications. In response to the growing market for 5G applications, the company this year is focusing on the new market demands of 5G infrastructure, AloT edge computing, and autonomous driving, as well as in-vehicle computing and environmental safety control applications. Today, TEAMGROUP is announcing its 745 SSD Series, which features the 5th generation BiCS NAND flash memory. It's a comprehensive industrial solution that comes with high capacities, low latencies, and high durability for the various application of industrial market.

The TEAMGROUP 745 SSD Series uses the new 112-layer 3D TLC and the latest 5th generation BiCS NAND flash memory, giving it approximately 40% more capacity and 50% better I/O performance than BiCS4 SSDs. This makes it fully suitable for the high-capacity, low-latency transmission requirements of edge computing. To meet the needs of a wide range of industrial applications, the 745 SSD Series is available in a variety of form factors with mainstream specifications, including models with SATA and PCIe Gen3x4 interfaces and capacities from 128 GB to 2 TB, offering the industry a variety of professional options. The 745 SSD Series is also equipped with SLC cache technology, which improves SSD read and write efficiency and supports high AI load for smart manufacturing and autonomous driving, while the AES 256-bit encryption prevents data security concerns and ensures safety and stability of the SSD.

ADATA Industrial Unveils A+ OPAL Encryption Software

ADATA Technology (Taiwan Stock Exchange: 3260.TWO), a leading manufacturer of high-performance DRAM modules, NAND Flash products, and mobile accessories today announces the launch of a proprietary management software that supports TCG OPAL data encryption technology, A+ OPAL. It applies to all ADATA's industrial-grade NVMe and SATA III solid state drives that support TCG OPAL. With an intuitive and simple interface, it enables users to safely manage storage devices, especially for data centers, servers, surveillance, healthcare, and other applications and meets the strict data security requirements of enterprises and governments.

Compared with other encryption software systems, the "Self-Encrypting Drive (SED)" hardware technology defined by TCG OPAL can provide more efficient and convenient management. A+ OPAL software not only greatly reduces the high threshold set by the TCG OPAL specification for users with non-technical backgrounds, but it also saves time and simplifies encrypting through the host system, making information security protection more efficient.

Seagate and Phison Partner to Develop New Enterprise SSDs

Seagate Technology Holdings plc, a world leader in mass-data storage infrastructure solutions, and Phison Electronics Corp., a global leader in NAND flash controller and storage solutions, announced today plans to expand their SSD portfolio of next-gen high-performance, high-density enterprise NVMe SSDs. The new SSDs will help enterprises lower total cost ownership (TCO) through increased storage density, lower power consumption, and higher performance. The companies also announced that they have entered a long-term partnership that will strengthen the development cycle and distribution of enterprise-class SSDs.

Seagate and Phison have collaborated on Seagate's mainstream SATA SSD products since 2017. That close cooperation has continued through the company's performance-leading line of FireCuda consumer gaming NVMe PCIe Gen4 x4 SSDs and the world's first purpose-built NAS NVMe SSDs. The partnership will now focus on meeting the evolving global enterprise demand for higher density, faster, and smarter storage infrastructure needs that complement HDD storage to enable comprehensive enterprise applications such as hyperscale data center, high-performance computing and AI.

Kioxia Corporation Commences Construction of New Fabrication Facility at Kitakami Plant

Kioxia Corporation, the world leader in memory solutions, today held a groundbreaking ceremony for its state-of-the-art semiconductor fabrication facility (Fab2) at its Kitakami Plant in Iwate Prefecture, Japan. Utilizing AI-based cutting-edge manufacturing, the new facility will contribute towards possible expansion of production of its proprietary 3D flash memory BiCS FLASH at the Kitakami Plant. Construction of the Fab2 facility is scheduled to be completed in 2023. The Fab2 facility will have an earthquake-absorbing structure and environmentally friendly design that utilizes advanced energy saving manufacturing equipment and renewable energy sources. In addition, an administration building will be constructed to accommodate the control management and technical departments in response to the increased staff.

"As a leader in memory, this Fab2 facility will become Kioxia's key manufacturing hub to produce our memory products at scale. We are planning to introduce automated in-facility transfers and advanced production control to make Fab2 a truly world-class smart fabrication facility," said Nobuo Hayasaka, President and CEO, Kioxia. "Fab2 will be able to intelligently coordinate and optimize its production with Fab1 at Kitakami Plant as well as our fabs in the Yokkaichi Plant, enabling the company to seize opportunities in the growing memory market in a timely manner." Under its mission of uplifting the world with memory, Kioxia is focused on developing initiatives to strengthen the competitiveness of its memory and SSD business, which it has developed over the past 35 years since inventing NAND flash memory in 1987. Kioxia remains committed to creating consistent and sustainable growth through timely capital investments that meet growing market demand.

SK hynix and Solidigm Introduce First Collaborative Product

Today SK hynix and Solidigm jointly introduced their first collaborative product, a new enterprise solid-state drive (eSSD), P5530. This limited release product highlights the emerging partnership between SK hynix and Solidigm, which formed three months ago when SK hynix acquired Intel's NAND and SSD business. The P5530 combines SK hynix's 128-layer 4D NAND flash with Solidigm's SSD controller and firmware supporting a PCIe Gen 4 interface. The product is offered in 1 TB, 2 TB, and 4 TB capacity options. SK hynix and Solidigm worked together to optimize performance with specific data center use cases and targeted deployments in mind.

Since the launch of Solidigm, the companies have partnered to forge a forward-moving strategy and co-develop products while reinforcing common values across the companies. Through the ongoing partnership and collaboration with Solidigm, SK hynix expects to enhance its NAND flash business competitiveness to the same extent as its DRAM business.

"With in-time demonstration of the collaborative product based on the combined competence of SK hynix and Solidigm, we aim to not only enhance our NAND flash business competitiveness but also speed up our "Inside America" strategy," said Kevin (Jongwon) Noh, President and Chief Marketing Officer (CMO) at SK hynix. "SK hynix and Solidigm will continue to partner in order to optimize both companies' operations to create greater synergies."

SMART Modular Technologies Announces Next Generation of ME2 Flash

SMART Modular Technologies, Inc. ("SMART"), a division of SGH and a global leader in memory solutions, solid-state drive (SSD) and hybrid storage products announces the next generation of its DuraFlash ME2 family of SATA SSD products, which includes industry-standard M.2 2242, M.2 2280, mSATA, Slim SATA and 2.5" form factors. These SSDs are available in both industrial and commercial temperature grades and have versions that implement SMART's SafeDATA power-loss, data-protection technology for graceful handling of power fluctuations and sudden power loss events.

The new ME2 SSDs incorporate the latest generation 3D NAND-technology and SMART Modular's proprietary NVMSentry firmware to deliver high performance SSD products with endurance up to one drive writes per day (DWPD) for five years using JEDEC JESD219A enterprise endurance workload. The new NAND device offers better cost per bit over previous 64-layer and 96-layer NAND generations without sacrificing performance and reliability. Further optimization of the NVMSentry firmware also yields enhancements in read and write consistency over wide ranges of application workloads. High performance computing, data centers, networking, cloud systems and many other applications that demand high reliability and consistency over long operating lifetime can benefit from the new ME2 SSD products.

ADATA Industrial Firmware for 112-Layer PCIe SSDs is UNH-IOL NVMe 1.4 Certified

ADATA Technology (Taiwan Stock Exchange: 3260.TWO), a global leading brand of industrial-grade memory, including flash storage products and DRAM modules, today announces that its in-house developed firmware for 112-Layer (BiCS5) 3D NAND PCIe solid state drives has become University of New Hampshire InterOperability Laboratory (UNH-IOL) NVMe 1.4 certified. The certification reaffirms ADATA's core competencies in R&D and commitment to offering high performance SSDs. UNH-IOL is an independent test facility that provides interoperability and standards conformance testing for networking, telecommunications, data storage, and consumer technology products.

The IM2P32A8 M.2 2280 and IM2P32A4 M.2 2242 industrial-grade solid state drives will benefit from the newly certified firmware. What's more, both SSDs feature 112-layer 3D TLC Flash memory developed by WD and KIOXIA, supports the PCIe Gen3x4 interface, and provides large capacities of up to 2 TB. With ADATA's firmware, they provide improved performance and interoperability. In addition to processing large volumes of data, the SSDs can also serve as storage devices or a boot disk, which can fulfill the needs of applications such as 5G, Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT), smart cities, and telemedicine.

Silicon Power Announces the UD80 NVMe SSD

Silicon Power (SP) releases its newest PCIe 3.0 SSD, the UD80, featuring storage capacities up to 2 TB with 3D NAND flash technology. The UD80 strikes a perfect harmony between cost and performance to breathe new life into your system without burning a hole in your pocket. Designed for creators that need more than just a jolt of inspiration, the UD80 provides exceptional value and a performance boost with a PCIe Gen 3 x4 interface - a boost that leaves SATA III SSDs behind in the dust.

The UD80 utilizes the speed capabilities of PCIe 3.0 with the efficiency of NVMe and Host Memory Buffer (HMB) technology. Let your creative juices flow with rapid read and write speeds up to 3,400 MB/s and 3,000 MB/s, respectively. At the same time, experience seamless productivity via the higher performance and lower latency that's achieved by NVMe 1.4 and HMB technology.

Total NAND Flash Revenue Drops 2.1% QoQ in 4Q21 Due to Slowing Demand and Falling Prices, Says TrendForce

In 4Q21, NAND Flash bit shipments grew by only 3.3% QoQ, a significant decrease from the nearly 10% in 3Q21, according to TrendForce's investigations. ASP fell by nearly 5% and the overall industry posted revenue of US$18.5 billion, a QoQ decrease of 2.1%. This was primarily due to a decline in the purchase demand of various products and a market shift to oversupply causing a drop in contract prices. In 4Q21, with the exception of enterprise SSD, the supply of which was limited by insufficient upstream components, the prices of other NAND Flash products such as eMMC, UFS, and client SSD, all fell.

TrendForce's summary of NAND Flash market sales performance in 2021 is as follows: although there have been signs of weakening since 2H21, thanks to remote services and cloud demand driven by the pandemic, revenue performance still grew significantly compared to 2020. Revenue reached US$68.6 billion, up 21.1% YoY, the second-biggest increase since 2018.

Schenker (XMG) Predicts New Laptop Delays Due to Component Shortages

China is reacting to new outbreaks of the Omicron variant of the Coronavirus with partial lockdowns. This could further delay the availability of laptops with 12th Gen Intel Core processors and NVIDIA's Ti graphics cards, which debuted at the beginning of the year. The first factories have already been closed in Suzhou in the east of the country. Supply chain and logistics bottlenecks, a shortage of certain chip types and price increases are already on the horizon.

NAND Flash Pricing Set to Spike 5-10% in Q2 Due to Material Contamination at WDC and Kioxia, Says TrendForce

WDC recently stated that certain materials were contaminated in late January at NAND Flash production lines in Yokkaichi and Kitakami, Japan which are joint ventures with Kioxia, according to TrendForce's investigations. Before this incident, TrendForce had forecast that the NAND Flash market will see a slight oversupply the entire year and average price from Q1 to Q2 will face downward pressure. However, the impact of WDC's material contamination issue is significant and Samsung's experience during the previous lockdown of Xi'an due to the pandemic has also retarded the magnitude of the NAND Flash price slump. Therefore, the Q1 price drop will diminish to 5~10%. In addition, according to TrendForce, the combined WDC/Kioxia NAND Flash market share in the 3Q21 was as high as 32.5%. The consequences of this latest incident may push the price of NAND Flash in Q2 to spike 5~10%.

The contaminated products in this incident are concentrated in 3D NAND (BICS) with an initial estimate of 6.5exabytes (approximately 6,500M GB) affected. According to TrendForce, damaged bits account for 13% of the group's output in 1Q22 and approximately 3% of the total output for the year. The normal production schedule for the entire line has yet to be confirmed. It is worth noting that the damages announced by WDC likely do not account for total losses stemming for this event and the number of damaged Kioxia parts has not been aggregated, so the total number of affected bits may increase further.

KIOXIA Celebrates 35th Anniversary of Invention of NAND Flash Memory

What do the MP3 players of the 1990s and today's smartphones have in common? Neither would exist were it not for NAND flash memory, an innovation whose influence has reverberated throughout the decades. KIOXIA America, Inc. today announced that it has reached a new milestone - 2022 marks the 35th anniversary of the company's invention of NAND flash memory.

Back in 1987, it would have been hard to imagine all of the ways that this then brand-new technology would impact the world. NAND flash memory has ushered in entire new technological eras, and obsoleted technologies and products that had been in use for years - changing our lives in countless ways. Since starting at zero 35 years ago, the NAND flash market has grown to $70B. In terms of die density, flash memory has grown from 4 Mb to 1.33 Tb - a 333,000x increase. To put this exponential growth in perspective, in the 1990s, the largest available density flash memory could hold 1/8 of a photo. Flash forward to today, where the largest available die density is a whopping 1.33 Tb - and capable of storing 39,000 photos.

Global Semiconductor Revenue Grows by 25% in 2021, Surpassing $500 Billion for the First Time

Global semiconductor sales revenue grew by a more than comfortable 25% in 2021, hitting a new record above $500 Billion for the first time. The data, part of Gartner's preliminary report on the state of the industry in 2021, bookends yet another year plagued with shortages and too little supply for the thirst of the consumer and business sectors. Naturally, supply constraints have led to higher ASP (Average Selling Prices) for the hardware that does get manufactured and distributed, as we've seen all too well in the graphics card market.

"As the global economy bounced back in 2021, shortages appeared throughout the semiconductor supply chain, particularly in the automotive industry," said Andrew Norwood, research vice president at Gartner. "The resulting combination of strong demand as well as logistics and raw material price increases drove semiconductors' average selling price higher (ASP), contributing to overall revenue growth in 2021.

Price Drop of NAND Flash Products for 1Q22 Expected to Taper to 8-13% QoQ Decline, Says TrendForce

NAND Flash prices for 1Q22 are expected to decline by 8-13% QoQ, compared to TrendForce's previous forecast of 10-15% QoQ, primarily due to PC OEMs' increased orders for PCIe 3.0 products and the impact of the lockdown in Xi'an on PC OEMs' price negotiation approaches. To mitigate potential risks in logistics, NAND Flash buyers are now more willing to accept a narrower decline in contract prices in order to obtain their products sooner. However, as the Xi'an lockdown has not noticeably affected the local fabs' manufacturing operations, the movement of NAND Flash contract prices going forward will likely remain relatively unaffected by the lockdown.

In addition, TrendForce finds that the daily number of new COVID-19 cases in Xi'an has recently undergone a noticeable drop, and the local government has also announced that that the emergency level has been downgraded. As such, Samsung's and Micron's local production facilities are returning to normal with respect to workforce and operational capacity. Samsung's local production base manufactures NAND Flash products, whereas Micron's local production base is responsible for the testing and packaging of DRAM chips as well as the assembly of DRAM modules. The impacts of the lockdown mainly relate to delays in the deliveries of memory products to customers. On the other hand, the event has not caused a tangible loss in memory production.

Silicon Power Announces the XPOWER XS70 PCIe Gen4 NVMe SSD

The all-new XPOWER XS70 PCIe 4.0 SSD from Silicon Power (SP) is about to take gaming to new highs with its thrilling performance and unique design that will give hardcore gamers the boost to take on opponents for hours on end.

With a standard data transfer rate that's 2x faster than the 3.0 version, the XS70 PCIe Gen4 x4 with 3D NAND flash memory and NVMe 1.4 support is exactly what serious gamers need to crush the competition. Mind-blowing continuous read and write speeds up to 7,300 MB/s and 6,800 MB/s, respectively, enable the XS70 to push the limits of what an SSD can do so you can break new records.

Phison Acquires Nextorage to Strengthen Customized High-end Storage Market

In response to the rising market demand for next-generation, customized high-end storage, Phison Electronics Corp. (Phison; 8299TT), a leader in NAND controllers and NAND storage solutions, acquired shares of its joint-venture company Nextorage Corporation (hereinafter referred to as "Nextorage") from its joint-venture partner, Sony Storage Media Solutions Corporation (hereinafter referred to as "SSMS"; SSMS is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Sony Group Corporation). The acquisition continues Phison's expansion into the customized high-end storage market, including high-resolution image processing systems, automotive electronics, e-sports and gaming systems, factory automation, electronic medical equipment, and industrial robots, etc. Through the resources of local R&D engineers in Japan, it serves nearby Japanese customers and continuously improves service quality.

Japan is a major industrial country. In addition to industrial robots that are widely used globally, automotive electronics, e-sports and game systems, high-resolution imaging systems, electronic medical equipment, and factory automation equipment all occupy important positions in the world. In addition to high-speed data access, storage products required by this type of high-end application market often require a certain degree of customization and system-optimization adjustments for terminal applications. In other words, the standard storage products on the market cannot be perfectly matched and integrated with the system side, and therefore there is a demand gap for customization. The acquisition of the joint-venture company Nextorage, from joint-venture partner SSMS, which is strong in the customized high-end storage market, is expected to help Phison strengthen its high-end customized storage products to meet the needs of the Japanese and global markets.
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