The global 3D NAND flash memory market is growing, due to increasing demand for solid state drives with increasing memory space for devices, such as laptops, tablets, and smartphones. The increasing need of small form factor and high memory requirement is supporting the increasing research and development activities. Electronic device manufacturers are one of the major end-users of 3D NAND flash memory. The incorporation of 3D NAND flash memory in consumer electronic products and enterprise applications is one of the major factors, providing ample growth opportunities for the global 3D NAND flash memory market in the coming years; however the low adoption of products, such as ultrabook and high initial prices are restraining the growth of the market.
The Asia-Pacific 3D NAND flash memory market leads among the global regions, due to high presence of electronic device manufacturers in the region. In comparison to 2D or planer NAND flash memory, 3D NAND flash memory offers several advantages, such as enhanced performance, more scalability and durability, better stability, and higher level of reliability. Also, it fulfills high endurance storage and performance needs of tablets, laptops and smartphones. As 3D NAND flash memory retains data without power supply, they are also used in solid state drives; while their manufacturing process is less complicated, in comparison to other alternative technologies. This is because; it uses similar material such as that of NAND with minimal modifications in it.
3D NAND flash memory is formed by arrangement of array in three-dimension on a silicon substrate. The memory cells are stimulated to the third dimension for achieving a considerable increase in density. This is done by stacking cells on the top of each other vertically or horizontally, for conducting charge through NAND strings.
The primary buyers of 3D NAND flash memory are manufacturers of enterprise devices, such as servers and original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) of consumer electronics products. The adoption of solid state drive is increasing in the enterprise server category, due to consumption of less power, and more efficiency and reliability of 3D architecture. For storage, flash memory is preferred in place of hard disk drives in notebooks and smartphones, due to resistivity of flash memory to vibrations. The ability to stream videos on the net through smart devices and large file uploading capabilities are some of the factors, expected to drive the growth of the mobile device category among the end users of 3D NAND flash memory.
Samsung launched the first 3D NAND flash memory chip 3D V-NAND in 2012. OEMs are expected to launch several products using 3D NAND in the coming years, due to advancements in NAND flash technology to 3D NAND. Apple is working on the development of a new model in its MacBook series, by using Samsung 3D V-NAND for data storage. Several other market vendors, such as Intel, Micron, Samsung and Toshiba are also expected to foray into the market with similar offerings in the coming years.
Some of the competitors in the global market are Toshiba Corporation, Samsung Electronics Co. Ltd, SanDisk Corporation, Micron Technology Inc., Apple Inc., SK Hynix Inc., and Intel Corporation.
Global 3D NAND Flash Memory Market Segmentation
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