500 million RDRAM modules shipped

Rambus announced its customers have shipped more than 500 million RDRAM memory devices. The modules are manufactured since 1997 and are commonly found in applications ranging from game consoles and high definition televisions to Internet routers.

While Rambus celbrates thius achievement as a milestone, the shipment figures are far less than what the company initially anticipated at the introduction of the technology. Originally positioned as the de-facto replacement for SDRAM memory for PCs with the launch of the Pentium 4 processor ("Willamette") by Intel, the company believed in 2000 to be able to climb to a 90 percent market share, but reduced that number to 22 percent in early 2001. Today, the memory has been pushed out of the mainstream by DDR and is estimated to cover a low single-digit market share.

Rambus will soon have another shot at high-end memory with XDR DRAM memory devices, that are likely to make their debut in Sony's Playstation 3 and later find their way into high-end graphics cards. We certainly would not be surprised, if Rambus tried again to get into system memory as well. (THG)