There’s been a lot of discussion lately about NAND in enterprise applications. Can NAND hit enterprise requirements? Will sub-40nm NAND ever serve this market? Is it really a compelling choice? Put simply: yes. Here are a few reasons why:
Multiple Routes to Quality & Reliability More than any other segment, enterprise apps want high quality and high reliability NAND. While we create specially-designed “Enterprise NAND” that delivers super-low defect rates and high endurance for specific applications, there are other methods to increase endurance. For instance, some of our customers take advantage of the high density of our newest NAND to build systems with a surplus of capacity. Because there’s extra density, each cell is written less often, and the effective life of all the NAND goes up dramatically. Advanced wear-leveling algorithms will also provide advanced NAND with better endurance levels than it achieved in the past.
NAND Control Will See Breakthrough Innovation Yes, developing NAND controller technology is more challenging with each process node, but it is also an area of heavy focus and technology investment. Micron, with SSD’s and other technologies in development, is ensuring that NAND is fit for the enterprise. Controllers will continue to improve along with the NAND changes—this is an area of tremendous innovation, and mirrors what occurred in HDD evolution.
Scaling—The Path Ahead Some have suggested that only legacy process NAND is fit for enterprise applications. That’s simply not true. As noted above, there are multiple methods to achieve enterprise-class performance on advanced process NAND. And while we will continue to provide some legacy NAND for key applications, most enterprise customers will want to take advantage of the benefits new technology presents. In fact, this week we will introduce a new portfolio of ultra-reliable Enterprise NAND products designed on our mature 34nm NAND process – enabling the high density and better cost structure that only advanced process NAND can provide.
Make sure to stay tuned to our blog for more on that later this week. And we stated this summer at the Flash Memory Summit, NAND has plenty of room for further scaling improvements. Don’t let the naysayers fool you—the years ahead are going to be an exciting period of change and accelerating NAND adoption into hundreds of new applications. I’m looking forward to it.
About Our Blogger
Kevin is Micron Technology's Director of NAND Marketing.