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Spansion touts first 4-bit-per-cell flash memory

Posted: 27 Sep 2006 ?? ?Print Version ?Bookmark and Share

Keywords:MirrorBit Quad Technology? flash memory? 4-bit-per-cell? low cost Flash? integrated electronics?

Flash memory supplier Spansion Inc. demonstrated what it claims as the industry's first four-bit-per-cell flash memory technology. Produced at Spansion's Fab 25 production facility in Texas, United States, the MirrorBit Quad technology is designed to expand flash memory innovation and lower costs of storing digital content inside electronic devices.

"This is a significant milestone not only for Spansion, but for the entire flash memory industry," said Bertrand Cambou, president and CEO of Spansion. "The increased storage capacity, small size and improved cost structure of MirrorBit Quad solutions will change the way consumers store and interact with their contenteasily accessible within their deviceswhether in cellphones, navigation systems, STBs or removable applications."

The technology will be the basis for a family of differentiated data storage solutions created for the integrated flash memory market by Spansion's newly created media storage division. The company also plans to partner with leading companies to bring digital media solutions to segments of the removable market. Production of MirrorBit Quad 512Mbit, 1Gbit and 2Gbit products on 90nm is planned by year-end, followed by 1-, 2-, 4- 8- and 16Gbit products on 65nm in 2007.

Two bits per storage location
MirrorBit Quad technology, like Spansion's two-bit-per-cell MirrorBit technology, stores charges in two distinct locations on a non-conducting nitride storage medium to deliver fundamental cost, quality and manufacturing advantages over floating-gate technology. While two-bit-per-cell MirrorBit technology stores one bit per storage location, MirrorBit Quad stores two bits per storage location. Moreover, MirrorBit Quad has headroom to support even more bits-per-cell in the future. Due to the increased storage capacity per cell, MirrorBit Quad technology can deliver up to 30 percent smaller effective cell size per bit than floating-gate MLC NAND Flash memory technology at the same process technology node.

During a press event in Beijing, China, the working silicon was demonstrated through an MP3 application and a camera capturing a 5Mpixel digital photo of the Dong Yuan Theater on a MirrorBit Quad-based flash memory card. The first products based on MirrorBit Quad technology are to be announced later this year.

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