Micron Is First to Deliver 3D Flash Chips With More Than 200 Layers

232-layer NAND makes tiny 2-terabyte products that deliver data 50 percent faster: Boise, Idaho–based memory manufacturer Micron Technology says it has reached volume production of a 232-layer NAND flash-memory chip. It’s the first such chip to pass the 200-layer mark, and it’s been a tight race. Competitors are currently providing 176-layer technology, and some have said they are on track to follow Micron’s skyward move or already have working chips in hand. The new Micron tech as much as doubles the density of bits stored per unit area versus competing chips, packing in 14.6 gigabits per square millimeter. Its 1-terabit chips are bundled into 2-terabyte packages, each of which is barely more than a centimeter on a side and can store about two weeks worth of 4K video. With 81 trillion gigabytes (81 zettabytes) of data generated in 2021 and International Data Corp. (IDC) predicting 221 ZB in 2026, “storage has to innovate to keep up,” says Alvaro Toledo, Micron’s vice president of data-center storage. [...]

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