Need for Additional Features in Computing Memory Boosts Development of Next Generation Memory Technologies

Which new memory technologies will appear as real contenders to displace either or both DRAM and NAND flash is currently the big question. While some of the new emerging technologies such as FRAM (ferroelectric RAM), MRAM (magnetic RAM), and PCM (phase change memory) are in commercial production, their use is limited to niche applications as compared to NAND flash and DRAM.

Despite the growing consensus that MRAM, ReRAM (resistive RAM), and STT-RAM (spin-transfer torque RAM) are the most promising emerging technologies, they are still far from commercial adoption. This is because emerging technologies need to deliver the desired features for adoption on a mass scale. Nevertheless, on account of the speed and scalability offerings of emerging memory solutions, the global next generation memory technologies market is expected to display a CAGR of 46.1% from 2013 to 2019, says Transparency Market Research.

Q. What are the factors that are leading to the development of new memory technologies?

 A. The demand for faster, cost-effective, and highly scalable memory solutions are creating a pressing need for next generation memory solutions. This has led to a significant number of product development activities that are in place in the memory solutions market. At present, there is an increasing need for universal memory solution that can serve varied application areas with the same effectiveness to overcome the shortcomings of existing memories.

Q. How is technology affecting the degree of competition in the global next generation memory technologies market?

A. Considerably. In 2012, Fujitsu Ltd. dominated the market due to higher sales of its FeRAM technology as it is a relatively mature product. Everspin Technologies Inc. and Micron Technology Inc. held the second-largest market shares in the same year as they are major manufacturers of MRAM and PCM respectively. 

Q. Which are the leading non-volatile emerging memory solutions in the next generation memory technologies market?

A. FeRAM, PCM, and MRAM are the leading emerging memory solutions that held significant market shares in 2012. ReRAM and CBRAM are other leading emerging memory technologies in this market. With increasing adoption of MRAM and PCM memory solutions, enterprise storage and cache memory is likely to be the largest application segment for next generation memory technologies.

Q. How are regional markets faring in the global next generation memory technologies market?

A. In 2012, North America stood as the largest market for next generation memory technologies followed by Europe. In North America, the availability of technologies characterized by mobile memory chips of high-speed at a low cost per bit are the major factors that are influencing the growth trajectory of this regional market.

On the other hand, in Europe, the drop in the average selling prices of current memory devices have contributed to the increased utilization of next generation memory technologies. Moreover, due to a certain degree of volatility in the Europe market, vendors are looking eastward for sustainable growth in emerging markets in this region.

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