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Micron announces new 16nm TLC NAND for consumer applications

By Koh Wanzi - on 4 Jun 2015, 10:03am

Micron announces new 16nm TLC NAND for consumer applications

Image Source: Storage Review

Micron has unveiled its new 16nm triple-level-cell (TLC) NAND at Computex 2015 targeted at consumer applications that prioritize performance, reliability and value. While Micron and Intel announced the joint development of their new 32-layer 3D NAND not too long ago, Micron isn’t ready abandon planar memory just yet.

There’s a limit to how much NAND flash can be scaled down, which is why memory manufacturers like Toshiba, SanDisk and Samsung are also looking into 3D NAND to continue meeting the demand for higher memory densities and capacities. However, 2D NAND remains the more profitable product as the 3D NAND process as yet to fully mature, which is why Micron is still continuing development in this area.

For 2015 at least, Micron believes that its 16nm TLC NAND will continue to meet consumer needs as Micron shifts toward 3D NAND production in the next year. TLC NAND technically offers lower endurance than both single-level-cell (SLC) and multi-level-cell (MLC) NAND, but it has since taken massive strides forward in recent years to become a viable and cost-effective product.

According to Micron, TLC NAND makes up around half of flash devices shipped and demand is expected to remain strong for the rest of the year. The new TLC NAND will enable the same capacity as MLC NAND but with at 28% shrink in die area, resulting in lower costs. 

Micron’s 16nm TLC NAND is in production and shipping now. Consumer SSDs using the new NAND are expected to appear this fall, alongside Micron’s own products with the same technology.

Source: Micron

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