Samsung, Toshiba team up to boost NAND flash speeds

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Samsung and Toshiba have announced plans to push for a new NAND flash memory specification meant to significantly speed up transfer rates. Specifically, the two companies committed themselves to develop toggle-mode DDR 2.0 NAND flash memory with a 400Mb/s interface, which is speedier than the 133Mb/s on current DDR 1.0 memory and ten times faster than the 40Mbps interface found on traditional single data rate (SDR) NAND flash chips.

The technology will compete with the ONFI (Open NAND Flash Interface) backed by Intel, Micron Technology and SanDisk, and is meant for use in high performance products such as SSDs, as well as a range of other consumer electronics products like smartphones and tablet PCs. As PCWorld notes, adoption rate of the two technologies will be influenced by supply, and since Samsung and Toshiba supply almost 70% of the NAND flash memory market, things look a bit favorable for toggle-mode DDR 2.0 adoption.

Samsung last month introduced one of the first SSDs that uses toggle-mode DDR NAND flash memory. Using 30nm multi-level cell (MLC) chips, Samsung claims the 512GB drive can achieve sequential read and write speeds of 250MB/s and 220MB/s, respectively. By comparison, ONFI-based drives can reportedly deliver speeds of 200Mb/s and 166Mb/s.

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