Samsung to initiate mass production of PRAM in June

By on May 6, 2009, 9:20 AM
Update (5/11): We received direct word from Harry Yoon, Samsung's Senior Technical Marketing Manager, which reads as follows: "Samsung is currently sampling a 60-nanometer class 512Mb PRAM. Initial production will be determined in accordance with customer demand expected in the second half of 2009."

This accentuates the blog post provided by ecdfan in the comments below in that the present chips are 512Mb (bit) and not 512MB (byte), and should not be expected this coming June. However, the blog's insinuation that there is a “lack of customer demand” remains to be seen, and obviously Samsung feels otherwise if production plans remain on the table.

Update: We've been unable to confirm with Samsung if it's indeed true they are moving into production of PRAM in the coming months, so some of the facts described below could be inaccurate. The last time Samsung issued a press release related to PRAM technology was in 2006 when they announced that by 2008 they would have samples ready to offer a competitive choice over NOR flash. We are awaiting their response to our email.

Original story: Samsung Semiconductor recently announced its plan to mass produce 512MB PRAM (Phase-change memory) chips come June. The long awaited PRAM chips are welcome competitors on the market which hope to successfully trump both NAND and NOR flash memory.

PRAM utilizes the interesting characteristic of chalcogenide glass, which can change states between crystalline and amorphous with the introduction of heat. Through this behavior, it can deliver significant performance gains over conventional flash memory. Not only can the memory element be switched at a more rapid rate, but it is able to modify the state of individual bits without having to erase previously stored data.

Samsung presently theorizes that the next generation memory is up to 30 times the speed of traditional flash memory. As the cherry on top, its reliability is also said to be far superior, boasting up to 10 times the lifespan. Pricing information is not yet available, as is any word on what devices, if any, will adopt the memory hot off the press. Given the nature of the technology, it wouldn’t be surprising to see its introduction in mobile handset devices.

User Comments: 11

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ecdfan said:
This article is fake. Samsung has not announced any plan to initiate mass production of PRAM in June. Read the 9 reasons why at:[url]
tengeta said:
Lasts 10 times longer? How the heck often does RAM ever go bad on anyone? If its not DOA its generally a lifelong kinda use thing.
Rick said:
[quote]30 times the speed of traditional flash memory[/quote]Tengeta, it's 10x the lifespan of FLASH memory. Flash memory does have a pretty limited lifespan, but controller logic helps evenly distribute writes across the entire flash module to make sure it gets even wear.And yes, regular RAM goes bad. It isn't very often, but I've had two bad sticks myself over the past decade and being in the computer repair biz, I see failing RAM modules more often than one might think...edcfan, thanks for the heads up. While you may be correct, PRAM has been demoed at the IDF though, so at least it isn't too far fetched.[Edited by Rick on 2009-05-07 08:31:41]
techplus said:
Wow what a freak you are .. you have actually created a whole life and now a blog to attack ECD.. you are no fan you are a fanatic anti ecd phase change memory anything ovonic.this article about Phase Change Memory seems legit .. and if its just a leak im sure Samsung will put out a PR sooner or later. good luck to you may i suggest some meds.
ecdfan said:
Rick: Demoed, but no customer would ever want that overpriced monstrosity. Flash, particularly a NAND+NOR combination, does much better job at 30x less cost.techplus: The fact that Samsung may issue a press release in the future does not negate the fact that article was fake. The author, Mr. DeCarlo, has now posted an update: "We've been unable to confirm with Samsung if it's indeed true they are moving into production of PRAM in the coming months, so some of the facts described below could be inaccurate."
Matthew said:
Yes, I attempted to contact John Lucas, Samsung's North American "Trade Press & Market Analyst Memory and LCD Panels", early Thursday morning. I've yet to receive a response confirming nor denying the recent rumors around their PRAM.I'll be sure to update the post if and when I hear back.
Matthew said:
Updated 5/11 with Samsung's response to the PRAM rumors.
techplus said:
So Matthew where did you get the info that Samsung was going into full production with Phase Change Memory in June in the first place? id would be very interested in hearing this .. as it seems was correct all along .. or is your info good but just cant get it confirmed from Samsung? have u tried contacting Ovonyx?
Matthew said:
@techplus: If you take fine notice to the blue text in the first paragraph of the original story, it is a link to cdrinfo - which is where I got the information. That website was also mentioned in the blog post provided by ecdfan.I'm not 100% certain where the story originated, but the blog post suggests it was first released at Electronista. That said, I've seen it on about five or so other very credible sites, who ultimately followed the same misinformed lead, most of which linked back to cdrinfo.The information in my original post (again, pulled from other sites) is *mostly* incorrect, as noted in the most recent update.*Edit*Oh, and no, I have not tried to contact anyone other than Samsung regarding the PRAM.[Edited by Matthew on 2009-05-13 07:37:03]
ecdfan said:
Matthew: The statement by Samsung is not surprising - we have seen this before. They fed a story (see here: [url]
8173[/url] to the Japanese press in February of 2007, promising "Volume production set for 1H of 2008 to meet "rather strong demands." Never happened. As in every techno-Ponzi, the release date is always in the plausible future.
Matthew said:
It is a matter of speculation on your part that Samsung's PRAM will not (ever) reach production. I cannot agree with that assumption as they have provided me with word to the contrary.Suffice to say, the release may come and it may not. Regardless, according to Samsung, in the present, they are planning on a late 09 launch. You are free to perceive that information from any angle or agenda you see fit.
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