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The connected consumer products we constantly use — smart phones, tablets and laptops— as well as the growing number of devices that comprise the Internet of Things, rely on SRAM, DRAM and flash for their memory requirements. These are the workhorses of memory technologies and each one has performed its specific purposes well. But with the growing number of always-on, connected products generating huge amounts of data every day, these memory technologies are struggling to keep up in the cache/memory/storage hierarchy.
This is driving demand for new memory technologies that are faster, more reliable and energy efficient. Simply continuing to shrink the chip features of traditional devices today doesn’t produce the same gains as in the past. The result is a diverging and complicated roadmap of different kinds of memory. Several of the replacement technologies the industry is working on — namely MRAM, 3D NAND and 3D XPoint™ memory — will require the use of new materials and processes to resolve some significant manufacturing challenges. The question is, can they all succeed and become mainstream solutions?
I recently discussed the various challenges presented by the changing memory landscape with industry analyst and CEO of VLSIresearch Inc. G. Dan Hutcheson. I invite you to watch the below video of our conversation and hope you find our discussion informative and agree that the memory sector is getting very interesting.
3D XPoint is a trademark of Intel Corporation or its subsidiaries in the U.S. and/or other countries.