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Are you ready for 128 GB memory cards and solid state drives at more reasonable prices? Intel and Micron have teamed up to deliver a 128 GB multicell NAND flash memory chip that will make incredibly dense memory a reality for tablets, cell phones and yes, servers too.
Of course, even as we get more memory we’re shunting more bits to the cloud, making fat solid-state drives less of necessity on the client device and perhaps boosting demand for them in the cloud.
The Intel and Micron news is good for electronics lovers, but it’s also worth noting because of how these companies built their memory — using what they call a “planar cell structure,” to help with problems of leakage as the channels etched into the chips shrink. Kevin Kilbuck, director of marketing for Micron’s NAND Solutions Group, says the technology should continue to work as chips get smaller and smaller.
It’s also worth noting that — in the arcane world of memory chips — Intel and Micron have created a memory chip that delivers 128 gigabits (which translates to 16 GB) that can be stacked 8-chips high in a package. That’s what gets us to the 128 GB number. Right now the latest 64 GB-capable flash devices are manufactured at 20 nanometers and the stacked 128 GB-version will available in January — with mass production due by the middle of next year.
That means that 128-GB devices might be in your holiday stocking next December.