Just last week IM Flash Technologies -- a joint venture between Intel and Micron Technology -- announced a new 20nm NAND memory chip manufacturing process touted as the smallest most advanced yet. But as it is common in the tech industry these titles never last too long. Case in point: Toshiba and SanDisk have announced plans to begin sampling NAND flash memory chips manufactured using a 19nm process technology before the end of this month.
The first product to be made on the 19nm process will be a 64Gbit (8GB) multi-level cell (2-bits-per-cell) flash memory chip, with high-volume production planned for the second half of 2011. At that time, SanDisk will also add 3-bits-per-cell products fabricated with the 19nm process technology to its lineup, according to the press release.
"We are excited to introduce the world's smallest and lowest-cost NAND flash chips based on industry-leading 19nm process technology in our ongoing collaboration with our manufacturing partner Toshiba," said Yoram Cedar, executive vice president and chief technology officer, SanDisk. "Products based on this technology are designed to enable new applications, form factors and consumer experience that will continue to drive the flash industry to new heights."
The companies said the smaller process would allow device makers to squeeze more storage in less space. There's no mention of the chip's actual dimensions besides citing the prospect of stacking a batch of 16 to deliver 128GB modules for use in mobile phones, tablet computers and other devices. The 19nm NAND chips are equipped with Toggle DDR2.0 to enhance data transfer speed, and use an All-Bit-Line architecture with proprietary programming algorithms and multi-level data storage management that will allegedly uphold performance and reliability.