Intel's G3 SSDs may be the new hotness, but the company announced along with Micron that it has made a new, finer 20nm process technology for manufacturing NAND flash memory. The new 20nm process produces an 8 GB multi-level cell (MLC) NAND flash device.
The new 20nm 8GB device measures just 118mm2 and enables a 30 to 40 percent reduction in board space (depending on package type) compared to the companies' existing 25nm 8GB NAND device. The new 20nm process maintains similar performance and endurance as the previous generation 25nm NAND technology.
A reduction in the flash storage layout provides greater system level efficiency as it enables tablet and smartphone manufacturers to use the extra space for end-product improvements such as a bigger battery, larger screen or adding another chip to handle new features.
The 20nm, 8GB device is sampling now and expected to enter mass production in the second half of 2011. At that time, Intel and Micron also expect to unveil samples of a 16GB device, creating up to 128GBs of capacity in a single solid-state storage solution that is smaller than a U.S. postage stamp.