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Greenliant Industrial SSDs Reach Ultra-High Endurance of 250,000 PE Cycles

Greenliant has introduced a new class of ultra-high endurance solid state drives (SSDs) that can reach up to 250,000 program/erase (P/E) cycles. These 1-bit-per-cell (SLC) SSDs are part of Greenliant's new EnduroSLC product line, which offers various endurance specifications-50K, 100K and 250K P/E cycles-for demanding industrial applications.

NANDrive SSDs, enabled by Greenliant's EnduroSLC Technology, now provide embedded systems designers with more options when choosing data storage products for long life applications. Using advanced NAND flash management algorithms and hardware error correction code (ECC) capabilities, Greenliant can significantly increase the life of its high reliability NANDrive SSDs for customers requiring superior endurance and data retention for extended periods of time.

Samsung Launches The New 860 QVO SSD Starting At $149.99 For The 1 TB Model

Samsung Electronics today unveiled its new consumer solid state drive (SSD) lineup - the Samsung 860 QVO SSD - featuring up to four terabytes (TB) of storage capacity with exceptional speed and reliability. Built on the company's high-density 4-bit multi-level cell (MLC) NAND flash architecture, the 860 QVO makes terabyte capacities more accessible to the masses at approachable price points.

"Today's consumers are using, producing and storing more high-resolution files than ever, including 4K videos and graphics-intensive games, escalating demand for greater capacities and performance in storage devices," said Dr. Mike Mang, vice president of Brand Product Marketing, Memory Business at Samsung Electronics. "Samsung continues to lead the move toward multi-terabyte SSDs with the introduction of the Samsung 860 QVO, delivering fast performance, reliability and value to more consumers around the world."

ADATA Launches XPG microSDXC UHS-I U3 Class 10 Cards

ADATA Technology, a leading manufacturer of high-performance DRAM modules, NAND Flash products, and mobile accessories today announces the launch of its XPG microSDXC UHS-I U3 Class 10 cards. Made for those who live and breathe portable gaming, these Application Performance Class 1 (A1) cards sport read of up to 100MB/s and write of up to 85MB/s, providing users instant gratification with fast access to their games.

Great for All Types of Portable Gaming

With read speeds of up to 100MB/s and write speeds of up to 85MB/s, users will revel in the ability to download, install and start up games quickly. In addition to portable gaming devices like the Nintendo Switch , XPG microSDXC UHS-I cards also help speed things up on smartphones, tablets, and VR devices. 128GB, 256GB, and 512GB capacity cards are on offer to provide expanded storage space for downloadable content (DLC), downloadable games, and more.

SSDs Are Cheaper Than Ever, Hit the Magic 10 Cents Per Gigabyte Threshold

It may be quite difficult to find bargains when it comes to DDR4 system memory or high-end graphics cards these days, but at least SSDs are more affordable now to help bandage that wound. This price drop of solid state storage has been happening throughout this year, and some units have reached a cost of 10 cents per gigabyte, a milestone difficult to have imagined a couple of years ago. The 2 TB variant of the Crucial MX500 SSD, for example, can be found now at $209, and those interested may want to check out our review of the 1 TB version before committing to a purchase.

This is great news already, but there is even better news coming as that cost will reportedly continue to drop. NAND flash could drop to $0.08 per gigabyte in 2019 according to some analysts, and some alternatives such as QLC drives from Samsung could push that trend even further. The traditional HDD market is also getting more inexpensive and better bang-for-your-buck, with a 2017 report from BackBlaze showed for example how cost per gigabyte was approaching $0.02 per gigabyte a year ago on some units. As always, price prediction reports tend to come out with the US market as a case study, but our own global TechPowerUp team is appreciating having more SSDs on deck for files and programs alike.

The New Samsung 860 QVO SSD With QLC NAND Gets Listed Online, Will Be Cheaper Than the Evo family

In October Samsung took the stage on its Tech Day event and announced its SSD roadmap. One of the key elements of that roadmap was the project to launch QLC (quad-level cell) SSDs, and now we've got more information on these products. Several European online retailers -French and Italian- have already listed the new Samsung 860 QVO units, which means their official availability is near us.

The new SSD drives will feature the conventional 2.5-inch format with SATA interface, but the naming scheme changes from EVO or Pro to the new QVO, which stands for "Quality and Value Optimized SSD". Performance goes up to 550/520 MB per second for sequential read/write, and apparently these SSDs will feature 96,000 IOPS read and 89,000 IOPS write. There will be at least three variants: 1 TB (MZ-76Q1T0BW), 2 TB (MZ-76Q2T0BW) and 4 TB (MZ-76Q4T0BW), with prices of 117.50 euros, 225,96 euros and 451,93 euros (VAT excluded) according to those online retailers. Even with taxes included 19% would make 140, 270 and 540 euros), these are cheaper priced than the ones we can find on the Evo family (160, 380 and 850 euros at those storage capacities), for example. Some of these online shops mention December 2018 as the ETA.

ADATA Launches XPG INFAREX K10 Keyboard and M20 Mouse

ADATA Technology, a leading manufacturer of high-performance DRAM modules and NAND Flash products, today announced the launch of two new gaming accessories, the XPG INFAREX K10 keyboard, and M20 mouse. Designed to enhance gaming experiences, the K10 keyboard sports nine LED lighting modes, anti-ghosting keys, and ergonomic keycaps, while the M20 mouse features durable OMRON switches, five-setting adjustable DPI, and RGB lighting.

The XPG K10 adds a new dimension to gaming with nine stunning LED lighting modes to choose from, allowing gamers to select the hue that best suits the games they are playing. The modes include - Flowing Light, Multicolor Breathing, Seven-Color Cycle Flickering, Switchable Static, Six-Color Cycle Breathing, Red and White Breathing Cycle, Red and White Cycle Flickering, White Static, and White Breathing. What's more, the K10 helps gamers up their game with some great features including 26 anti-ghosting keys to prevent missed or accidental keypresses, because in the heat of the moment a missed keypress could spell defeat. In combination with its ergonomically curved keycaps, the K10 improves accuracy, while also offering a comfortable keypress experience. Convenient Media Keys allow for quick adjustments of music, sound, or other effects in the middle of a battle without having to open other programs or app.

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.

Micron 5210 ION SSD Now Generally Available

Micron Technology, Inc., today announced the next step towards market leadership for its quad-level cell (QLC) NAND technology with immediate broad market availability of the popular Micron 5210 ION enterprise SATA SSD, the world's first QLC SSD, which began shipping to select customers and partners in May of this year. Available through global distributors, the Micron 5210 ION enterprise SATA SSD further accelerates Micron's lead in the QLC market, enabling replacement of hard disk drives (HDDs) with SSDs and building on Micron's recent launch of the Crucial P1 NVMe QLC SSD for consumer markets.

Enterprise storage needs are increasing as data center applications deliver real-time user insights and intelligent and enhanced user experiences, leveraging artificial intelligence (AI), machine learning, big data and real-time analytics. At the same time, there is a growing consumer need for higher storage capacity to support digital experiences. QLC SSDs are uniquely designed to address these requirements.

Samsung Cuts CAPEX by a Quarter, Calls it an "End of the Chip Boom"

Samsung Electronics Wednesday slashed its capital expenditure (capex) by a quarter, which could significantly reduce its NAND flash chip output, and raise NAND flash prices back to profitability for the company, although not anytime soon. This could herald a rise in SSD prices around this time next year, although they partly contradict analyses that predict further slides in NAND flash prices through 2019, as the advent of 96-layer 3D QLC NAND flash by every major player would add to swelling inventories in the market. If you'll recall, Samsung reportedly desires DRAM prices to remain high and establish current high DRAM prices as a new normal. The company went as far as to further reduce its DRAM output, just so supplies of DRAM in the market remain low. The company remarked that acceleration in NAND flash price-drops signifies an end of the "boom" in NAND flash chip demand that fueled growth over the past two years, as justification to its capex cuts.

Capital Expenditure on Silicon Chip Manufacturing to Rise to $67.5 billion in 2019

The race for smaller fabrication processes has become more and more expensive, and the expenses in R&D and factory retooling only look to increase. This - alongside the expected increase in demand from silicon-embedded products, which are almost all of them - means that additional funding will be poured into chip manufacturing capabilities. A report from SEMI indicates that the 14% increased investment in 2018 to $62.8 billion will increase a further 7.5% next year, reaching capital expenditure of $67.5 billion in 2019.

3D NAND fabrication plants lead the charge in investment, even if the market is facing some issues stemming from oversupply. The demand growth is being taken into account for these new expansion plans, however, with denser and denser chips being required for all manner of products. This is part of the reason why 43% of this years' spending has been allotted to new NAND factories, but the ratio for 2019 is a much lower 19% increase.

Toshiba Memory and Western Digital Celebrate the Opening of Fab 6

Toshiba Memory Corporation and Western Digital Corporation today celebrated the opening of a new state-of-the-art semiconductor fabrication facility, Fab 6, and the Memory R&D Center, at Yokkaichi operations in Mie Prefecture, Japan. Toshiba Memory started construction of Fab 6, a dedicated 3D flash memory fabrication facility, in February 2017. Toshiba Memory and Western Digital have installed cutting-edge manufacturing equipment for key production processes including deposition and etching. Mass production of 96-layer 3D flash memory utilizing the new fab began earlier this month.

Demand for 3D flash memory is growing for enterprise servers, data centers and smartphones, and is expected to continue to expand in the years ahead. Further investments to expand its production will be made in line with market trends. The Memory R&D Center, located adjacent to Fab 6, began operations in March of this year, and will explore and promote advances in the development of 3D flash memory. Toshiba Memory and Western Digital will continue to cultivate and extend their leadership in the memory business by actively developing initiatives aimed at strengthening competitiveness, advancing joint development of 3D flash memory, and making capital investments according to market trends.

ADATA XPG Announces Partnership with Flash Wolves eSports

ADATA Technology, a leading manufacturer of high-performance DRAM modules and NAND Flash products, today announces that is has formed a partnership with one of Taiwan's biggest names in eSports, the Flash Wolves. This partnership comes on the heels of ADATA's recent sponsorship of the IeSF World Championship 2018 in Kaohsiung, signaling its continued commitment towards supporting the growth of eSports in Taiwan and around the world.

"We are thrilled to be sponsoring the Flash Wolves as it is an extension of our mission of delivering high-performance hardware that enhances the experiences of gamers of all levels, from beginners to professionals," said Simon Chen, Chairman and CEO of ADATA. "Going forward, ADATA will continue to promote the development of eSports in Taiwan and other regions by working closely with all stakeholders, from eSports teams and event organizers to government entities.

Samsung, SK Hynix Slowing Down NAND, DRAM Fab Expansion Plans in Wake of Lower Demand Projections

DigiTimes is reporting plans from both Samsung and SK Hynix to slow down their fabrication capacity expansion plans for NAND and DRAM in wake of lower than expected demand projection for the first half of 2019. This move comes at a time where DRM pricing is still extremely prohibitive due to "higher demand than fabrication capacity output" - and we'd already seen the companies base their fabrication expansions on lower than expected demand increases, as a way to artificially keep pricing for the memory commodity high. NAND is another case - price per GB has been dropping like a rock. And now, the companies want to thwart expected lower demand with lower production values.

Samsung, for one, has reportedly put its plans for additional new production capacity for 1ynm DRAM chips at its fabs in Hwaseong and Pyeongtaek on hold. The chip vendor previously planned to build an additional 30,000 wafers monthly for DRAM memory starting the third quarter of 2018, the sources said - but is now looking to reduce that number to keep pricing from bottoming out. Sk Hynix is also reported to have slowed down its projected production, but details are scarcer on that side of the fence. All in all, it seems that whether there is demand or not, seeing DRAM prices falling to their previous levels is a dream in both name and, not paradoxically, reality.

KINGMAX Announces PJ3280 Entry-level M.2 NVMe SSD

KINGMAX, a world-renowned professional memory manufacturer, has consummated its product line of M.2 2280 PCIe NVMe solid-state drives (SSDs), providing users who want to improve their PC performance with a greater variety of choices. In addition to the ultra-fast M.2 PCIe SSD PX-3480 (Gen3x4) and the PX-3280 (Gen3x2), the affordable/entry-level PJ-3280 (Gen3x2) has also been introduced, allowing users who are considering turning to SSDs to boost their computer performance a higher-speed and more economical option aside from 2.5-inch solid-state drives.

An increasing variety of motherboards or notebooks are currently available on the market, including motherboards equipped with Intel Z270, X99 and the latest 2 Series/3 Series chipsets, all of which are equipped with the M.2 PCIe interface as standard equipment to enable future upgrades. As long as the M.2 slot is the M key version, a solid-state drive that comes with the M.2 PCIe interface can be employed to push the speed and performance of a computer to higher levels. The KINGMAX M.2 2280 NVMe SSD PJ-3280 (Gen3x2) is manufactured using 3D NAND Flash stacking technology, making it highly efficient, stable and durable. Meanwhile, the M.2 2280 is 22x80 mm in size and is available in capacities of 128GB, 256GB or 512GB, suitable for improving the performance of space-challenged notebooks and ultrabooks while expanding capacity.

Crucial Announces New BX500 Series of Entry Level SSDs

Crucial has become one of the biggest players in the consumer SSD market due to their excellent price/capacity/performance ratios (their SSDs consistently score highly in our own resident wizard's reviews for some reason, after all). Now, the company is looking to lower price/GB even more as it launches the BX500 series to the market - available in capacities of 120 GB, 240 GB and 480 GB using Micron 3D NAND chips.

Yes, it's a SATA III SSD. And yes, the SATA III connector really is a limiting factor in this SSD's performance - but remember that SATA III controllers are much less costly than NVMe implementations. Sequential performance is rated for up to 540MB/s read and 500MB/s write (4K performance is sadly absent). The whole plethora of usual SSD technologies are here as well - multi-step data integrity algorithm, thermal monitoring, SLC write acceleration, active garbage collection, TRIM support, self-monitoring and reporting technology (SMART) and error correction code (ECC)... For the pricing, these are likely of the DRAM-less variety of SSDs, which means SLC caching is of utmost importance for performance. But pricing really is some of the lowest ever - Crucial is quoting $29.99 for the 120 GB model, $49.99 for the 240 GB one and $89.99 for 480 GB worth of BX500 storage. Crucial will start shipping out orders on August 31st.

NAND Flash Prices Could Reach $0.08/GB in 2019

Prices of NAND flash could drop to historic lows of $0.08 per gigabyte in 2019, according to Jim Handy from Objective Analysis, addressing delegates at the 2018 Flash Memory Summit. If you add the cost of the controller, optional DRAM chip, and other low-cost parts that make up an SSD, 480~512 GB drives under $70 could finally be a reality; followed by 1 TB under $120, and 2 TB under $200. Handy attributes the low prices to a catastrophic oversupply of NAND flash in the industry, which could push manufacturers to the brink of economic collapse.

The price drop is also accelerated with the introduction of the QLC (4 bits per cell) technology, which increases densities (and conversely decreases price/GB). Luckily, most NAND flash manufacturers also happen to make DRAM, and are offsetting some of their NAND flash losses with DRAM profits, as DRAM remains in undersupply. The NAND flash price-crash threatens to wipe out conventional hard-disk drives from the consumer-space, at least in matured markets; relegating them to developing markets.

Seagate Launches Nytro 1000 SATA SSD Series with SandForce's DuraWrite Technology

Expanding on its Nytro portfolio of enterprise flash products, Seagate today announced the launch of its new Nytro 1000 Series SATA SSD drives. The Seagate Nytro 1000 SATA SSD series (which includes the Nytro 1351 and Nytro 1551 SSDs) delivers ultra-fast, consistent performance for read-intensive workloads. Globally available in the fall, the Nytro SSDs is being demonstrated at this week's Flash Memory Summit in Santa Clara.

The Nytro SSD series is designed to serve as the backbone of the enterprise's cloud infrastructure, making it ideal for data center managers looking to upgrade their existing systems.

Samsung starts Mass Production of QLC Consumer SSDs, 1 TB, 2 TB, 4 TB with over 520 MB/s Read/Write

Samsung Electronics, the world leader in advanced memory technology, today announced that it has begun mass producing the industry's first 4-bit (QLC, quad-level cell) 4-terabyte (TB) SATA solid-state drive (SSD) for consumers.

Based on 1-terabit (Tb) V-NAND with outstanding performance equivalent to the company's 3-bit design, Samsung's QLC SSD is expected to bring a new level of efficiency to consumer SSDs.

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.

ADATA Launches UD230 and UD330 USB Flash Drives

ADATA Technology, a leading manufacturer of high-performance DRAM modules, NAND Flash products, and mobile accessories today launched the UD230 and UD330 USB Flash drives. Featuring a capless, folding-cover design and a large lanyard hole for attaching to straps and keychains, they are easy-to-use and well-suited for on the go. The UD230 works in USB 2.0 and offers up to 64GB of storage, while the UD330 works in USB 3.1 and comes with up to 128GB storage. Both models are manufactured with the Chip-On-Board (COB) process, whichallows them to be more compact in size and more resistant to impact, water, and dust. ADATA remains committed to its USB Flash drive global leadership role and will continue releasing new models as market needs evolve.

Sporting a folding-cover design, the UD230 and UD330 remedy the universal dilemma of misplaced caps. The USB connector can be stored in the cover while not in use. This simple yet intuitive design helps make the UD230 and UD330very satisfying to use on the go.In addition, both models come with a large lanyard hole for convenience and personalization, allowing users to attach them to lanyard straps or keychains for easy carrying.

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.

Western Digital Releases 96-layer 3D QLC NAND with 1.33 Tb Capacity

Western Digital Corp. today announced successful development of its second-generation, four-bits-per-cell architecture for 3D NAND. Implemented for the company's 96-layer BiCS4 device, the QLC technology delivers the industry's highest 3D NAND storage capacity of 1.33 terabits (Tb) in a single chip. BiCS4 was developed at the joint venture flash manufacturing facility in Yokkaichi, Japan with our partner Toshiba Memory Corporation. It is sampling now and volume shipments are expected to commence this calendar year beginning with consumer products marketed under the SanDisk brand. The company expects to deploy BiCS4 in a wide variety of applications from retail to enterprise SSDs.

Samsung to Increase NAND Production Capacity in 2019, Upping Investment to $9 billion

Samsung is reportedly looking to increase its investment in the NAND space with a $2.6 billion increase to its annual NAND budget. The increase, which will bring the company's investment up to $9 billion, aims to increase production volume in what is building up to be the actual technology of choice for key players in the storage market.

Remember that for all the investment in increasing density and declining price per GB of competing mechanical solutions, we've just had notice of an HDD fabrication plant that's shutting down. Most of the funding will reportedly go into increasing production volume of 3D NAND memory. Should demand stay relatively stable, the (eventual) additional influx of memory chips to the market should help drive costs even lower - provided there's no funny business in price setting, of course.

Samsung Electronics Brings Next Wave of High-Performance Storage with Mass Production of Fifth-Generation V-NAND

Samsung Electronics, the world leader in advanced memory technology, today announced that it has begun mass producing its fifth-generation V-NAND memory chips with the fastest data transfers now available. In the industry's first use of the 'Toggle DDR 4.0' interface, the speed for transmitting data between storage and memory over Samsung's new 256-gigabit (Gb) V-NAND has reached 1.4-gigabits per second (Gbps), a 40-percent increase from its 64-layer predecessor.

The energy efficiency of Samsung's new V-NAND remains comparable to that of the 64-layer chip, primarily because the operating voltage has been reduced from 1.8 volts to 1.2 volts. The new V-NAND also has the fastest data write speed to date at 500-microseconds (μs), which represents about a 30-percent improvement over the write speed of the previous generation, while the response time to read-signals has been significantly reduced to 50μs.

Micron Provides Statement on Fujian Province Patent Litigation

(Editor's Note: We'll see if this statement from Micron is enough to staunch the bleeding on its shares - which it should, since the company says no recognizable impact will exist on its bottom line. If things are as they seem (and yet, they seldom are), this is a checkmate move from Chinese manufacturing companies - eventually supported by the Chinese government - and an interesting way to lock China's voracious DRAM and NAND market to fully domestic manufacturers.)

Micron Technology, Inc., announced that the Fuzhou Intermediate People's Court, Fujian Province, China today notified two Chinese subsidiaries of Micron that it has granted a preliminary injunction against those entities in patent infringement cases filed by United Microelectronics Corporation (UMC) and Fujian Jinhua Integrated Circuit Co. (Jinhua). The patent infringement claims of UMC and Jinhua were filed against Micron in retaliation for criminal indictments filed by Taiwan authorities against UMC and three of its employees and a civil lawsuit filed by Micron against UMC and Jinhua in the United States District Court for the Northern District of California for the misappropriation of Micron trade secrets.
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