Elpida develops thin memory device for tablets, phones

The devices can be used to pack more memory into thinner phones and tablets, Elpida said

Elpida Memory and subsidiary Akita Elpida Memory said Wednesday that they have developed technology to mass-manufacture a four-layer DRAM package just 0.8 millimeters thick that can be used to pack more memory into thinner mobile phones and tablets.

The new package shaves off 20 percent from current 1.0 mm four-layer packages.

The Japanese DRAM maker claimed that the 8-gigabit package, consisting of four low-power-consumption 2-gigabit DDR2 (double data rate, second generation) Mobile RAM chips, is the thinnest device currently in the DRAM industry.

The company's Mobile RAM is synchronous DRAM for mobile applications, and features lower power consumption and low-voltage operation.

Elpida said the next development step is an ultra-thin 0.8mm PoP (package-on-package) consisting of four layers of 4-gigabit products.

Volume production of the four-layer 0.8mm PoP products is expected to begin in the third quarter of this year, the companies said.

PoP is an integrated circuit packaging technique that reduces the mounting space and wire length on devices by stacking multiple packages.

Customers are already using two-layer 0.8mm 8-gigabit packages because existing 1.0mm-thick four-layer PoP products are too thick, Elpida said.

Demand for DRAM generated by tablets will rise by a factor of nine in 2011, fueled by booming sales of the iPad, combined with the arrival of more competitive alternative products, research firm IHS iSuppli said in June.

Tablets this year will consume 333.7 million gigabits of DRAM, up from 37.3 million gigabits in 2010. DRAM demand from tablets will soar to 1.1 billion gigabits in 2012, reaching 5.8 billion gigabits by 2015, iSuppli said.

John Ribeiro covers outsourcing and general technology breaking news from India for The IDG News Service. Follow John on Twitter at @Johnribeiro. John's e-mail address is john_ribeiro@idg.com

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