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Samsung sees 250GB SSDs by end of 2008

updated 02:50 pm EST, Fri February 22, 2008

Samsung 250GB SSD Hint

Samsung may double the capacity of its Flash SSD solid-state drives twice by the end of 2008, flash memory marketing chief Michael Yang says. The Korean company has already announced a 128GB version that it now expects to ship in the third quarter (a slight delay from its earlier first-half prediction) but now says it may roll out a drive that would top 250GB, roughly quadrupling the 64GB of storage found in SSDs for computers such as the MacBook Air or the imminent Lenovo ThinkPad X300.

The company has not detailed such a drive but would likely to offer a 256GB model (exactly twice the capacity of a 128GB drive) using Multi Level Cell (MLC) storage, which is slower than a Single Level Cell (SLC) drive but stacks multiple bits of data per cell to reduce the overall cost of the disk. Samsung has not said whether it continue to offer drives using Parallel ATA (the format used by the Air) or will switch to making drives with theoretically faster Serial ATA connectors.

Prices are also likely to drop substantially over time regardless of capacity increases, Yang adds. At the moment, his firm predicts price decreases of anywhere between 35 to 45 percent in the cost of an SSD from year-to-year and should eventually bring the prices of flash memory into line with slower but less costly rotating hard disks.

The company is also looking to rework the shape of solid-state drives, which until now have been limited into fixed widths (such as 1.8 or 2.5 inches) to fit into existing notebook and desktop cases. The right designs could allow for even thinner notebooks than available today by spreading the data out over a larger area or fitting into unconventional locations.



By Electronista Staff
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Comments

  1. cmoney

    Mac Enthusiast

    Joined: Sep 2000

    0

    Do SSDs fail?

    Like hard drives? Obviously not from a head crash but are they susceptible in other ways?

    If not, their added cost may be worth it to me if only because they have significantly lower need for backup.

  1. climacs

    Forum Regular

    Joined: Sep 2001

    0

    i wonder

    if they are susceptible to failure due to electrical discharge?

    I know they are pretty damned reliable otherwise.

  1. testudo

    Forum Regular

    Joined: Aug 2001

    0

    they fail

    They're a magnetic storage medium. They surely will fail. It is just a question of how, how long, etc. (h***, everyone thought CDs were forever, and those can fail in a short matter of time).

  1. paulc

    Junior Member

    Joined: Aug 2000

    0

    Price?

    So, Apple charges a grand for a 64G SSD in the Mac Book Air... that would make a 256G SSD around 4 grand.

    Oh wait, the price of jet fuel is going up... as they pay the fuel for Jobs jet, better to charge 8 grand. Oh and add 2 grand for the cost of the computer itself... after all, it IS a Mac, the computer for the richest of us.

  1. bitblt

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: Sep 2007

    0

    No magnetism involved

    It is a storage of electrical charge http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Flash_memory http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Floating-gate_transistor

    But they do fail: "under normal conditions, [they] will not discharge for many years"

  1. zaghahzag

    Dedicated MacNNer

    Joined: Aug 2006

    0

    redundancy

    SSDs are very durable physically. they wear out though with lots and lots of read/writes, although supposedly their longevity is improving.

    bitbit makes an interesting point. i wonder how long you can expect your information to remain on an SSD before it vaporizes.

  1. mytdave

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: Aug 2000

    0

    answers

    K, so NAND flash is rapidly improving. I'm not sure I agree that we'll see any usable quantities of 250GB or more shipping by the end of the year though.

    Flash (SSD, others) drives can fail in ways similar to other semiconductors. Avoid extremes and static discharge.

    Data longevity: Most flash will retain data for up to 10 years. If you're concerned about time, backup then re-write all the data to the device before 10 years is up.

    Data integrity: Flash has maximum re-write cycles. Typically several hundred thousand, which is really not that many. This may not be good for running OSs like Windows which love to constantly 'thrash' the drive. This limit can be minimized by how the drive's controller handles data. If the controller keeps track of data locations, and fills the drive to capacity before forcing a re-write, and then prioritizes and distributes re-writes, then the life will be extended.

    Wikipedia has some good write-ups on Flash memory. Check it.

    Yea, Apple charges $1k for the SSD drive, and it's a bargain. Go try to buy one yourself and see how much it set's you back.

  1. notehead

    Fresh-Faced Recruit

    Joined: Aug 2001

    0

    @paulc

    Dude, that attitude is so 2001. Get over it.

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