October 27, 2020

The Memory Market

3 min read
The market for memory ICs has always been dynamic, but with edge computing, artificial intelligence...

The market for memory ICs has always been dynamic, but with edge computing, artificial intelligence (AI), 5G and autonomous driving all taking off, the demand for memory technology is both expanding and evolving. Add dramatic shifts in the world of work and business because of the ongoing pandemic, and the memory industry has more challenges to solve all at once than ever before.

Our latest EE Times Special Project looks at how diverse memory technologies are advancing and what’s driving their evolution. Contributing editor Gary Hilson has been on the memory beat for a long time and he helped develop this Special Project and wrote many of the stories.

One of those takes a look at a set of memory technologies that are still described as “emerging,” even though most of them have been around for years. Hilson looks into whether they merit the renewed hype they’ve been getting in Emerging Memories May Never Go Beyond Niche Applications.


Advances in memory technology reflect a data explosion and the growing need to move processing closer to data. Memory and storage technologies are on parallel tracks, with more workloads being crunched in-memory. We explore the arc of memory technology in our upcoming Memory Technology Special Project.


Speaking of which, we have a story on one of those emerging technologies — MRAM — and how it’s catering to its specialized market. Alan Patterson, our correspondent in Taiwan, contributed Spin Partners with Arm, Applied in MRAM Manufacturing.

In the companion piece to the one on emerging technologies, Hilson investigates the so-called “legacy” memories too. Read Plenty of Life Left in Legacy Memories.

Security, reliability and longevity are just as important as performance for many of the applications that need more memory. Automotive, networking, industrial and medical applications don’t necessarily need the latest and greatest memory such as DDR5 DRAM or 3D NAND. We put that into perspective in Memory Only a Piece of the Security Puzzle.

Our resident AI maven, editor Sally Ward-Foxton, takes a look at how the demands of artificial intelligence applications are creating interesting new demands on memory technology. Read Memory Technologies Confront Edge AI’s Diverse Challenges.

Hilson was also our guest on a recent episode of our Weekly Briefing podcast, where he gave a pretty thorough overview of the memory market based on all of our research for the Special Project. He talks about the prospects of some of the emerging memories (ReRAM, MRAM and FRAM, for example); about PCRAM which might be considered to have actually emerged in the form of Intel Optane; and why it is that legacy memories are so enduring. You can find the podcast here: Interview: Roboticist Ayanna Howard | Memories May Be Beautiful, And Yet | Math & Neptune.

Also, memory technology has to be one of the most heavily acronymmed segments of the electronics industry. We provided A Memory Technology Glossary.

Articles in this Special Project:

Remote work Spurs Desktop Performance Increases

Workstations will demand more memory, but the future all-purpose device may be a smartphone.

By Gary Hilson

 

Spin Partners with Arm, Applied in MRAM Manufacturing

MRAM specialist Spin Memory attracted some important allies as it goes after the U.S. military memory market.

By Alan Patterson

 

Emerging Memories May Never Go Beyond Niche Applications

Healthy markets are possible for emerging memories without trying to supplant DRAM or NAND flash.

By Gary Hilson

 

 

Plenty of Life Left in Legacy Memories

Legacy memories are no longer lowly devices that hit their end of life (EOL) because a major vendor is focused on the latest and greatest.

By Gary Hilson

 

 

Memory Only a Piece of the Security Puzzle

Security features must be configured properly and work within a larger ecosystem.

By Gary Hilson

 

 

Memory Technologies Confront Edge AI’s Diverse Challenges

Edge AI applications are many and varied, which means that there are nearly endless options for memory for edge applications.

By Sally Ward-Foxton

 

 

NVMe-oF is Ready to Go the Distance

Is 2020 the year NVMe over Fabrics (NVMe-oF) finally takes off?

By Gary Hilson

 

 

By EE Times staff

 

 

Interview: Roboticist Ayanna Howard | Memories May Be Beautiful, And Yet | Math & Neptune

The Weekly Briefing podcast, September 25, 2020: A conversation with EE Times contributor Gary Hilson about emerging memories. Also, an interview Georgia Tech professor Ayanna Howard, an expert in AI and robotics.

By Brian Santo

The post The Memory Market appeared first on EETimes.

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