June 17, 2017 7:08 am JST

Samsung powers up output of fourth-generation flash memory

South Korean company looking to extend lead on rivals

KENICHI YAMADA, Nikkei staff writer

SEOUL -- Samsung Electronics said it plans to lift production of fourth-generation 3-D flash memory chips this year to more than half of its total NAND output -- an announcement that highlights the South Korean company's leg up on rivals at the field's cutting edge.

Samsung is said to have a lead of at least a year over competitors such as Toshiba and South Korea's SK Hynix in 64-layer 3-D NAND, the most advanced flash memory technology in production.

The 64-layer chip alone will account for more than half of the company's NAND output by year's end, the electronics maker said, thanks to volume production at its Pyeongtaek factory. The cutting-edge semiconductors will be also be manufactured in China. In 3-D chips, memory cells are stacked atop each other to increase capacity.

NAND chips store data in servers and smartphones. At present, 3-D chips, including third-generation ones, make up 50-60% of the company's total chip output. Fourth-generation chips are 50% faster than the 48-layer third generation and are about 30% more energy efficient.

Toshiba Corp.

Japan

Market(Ticker): TKS(6502)
Sector:
Industry:
Consumer Durables
Electronics/Appliances
Market cap(USD): 11,626.63M
Shares: 4,237.60M
Asia300

Samsung Electronics Co., Ltd.

South Korea

Market(Ticker): KRX(005930)
Sector:
Industry:
Electronic Technology
Telecommunications Equipment
Market cap(USD): 293,254.15M
Shares: 148.18M
Asia300

SK hynix, Inc.

South Korea

Market(Ticker): KRX(000660)
Sector:
Industry:
Electronic Technology
Semiconductors
Market cap(USD): 42,152.20M
Shares: 728.00M

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