back to article NAND the beat goes on: Samsung to fling out 96-layer 3D NAND chip

Samsung has added another regiment to its fast disk destruction army, announcing 90+ layer 3D-NAND chip manufacturing, with 1Tbit and QLC (4-level cell) chips coming. Falling up 2-way staircase and how it all works... Building 3D NAND chips brings the problem of accessing cells deep in the structure. Object Analysis's Jim …

  1. Dwarf Silver badge

    Exponential development

    Its amazing how far Flash memory has moved on in a relatively short period of time. FLASH was always the second-rate cousin to EPROM back in the late 80's, but now who still uses EPROM now ?

    Its getting hard to count how many different FLASH related technologies have been created, but the positive impact on so many technology products shows what a great enabler it is - from a performance, maintainability and innovation perspective..

    Long may the development and innovation continue !!

  2. Simon Harris Silver badge

    Re: Exponential development

    Bringing back memories of the 1980s...

    Fill a 27C64 with code, plug it in, doesn't work, stick it under the UV lamp for a bit, reprogram with the corrected code... repeat as necessary.

    Looking at Farnell and RS now, it looks like it's impossible to get anything smaller than a 27C256 (a size I could only aspire to when I started) and everything is one time programmable, no more quartz windows - I guess it's time to throw out the UV lamp!

  3. DougS Silver badge

    Re: Exponential development

    EEPROMs have a MUCH longer unpowered lifetime than flash, so if you have a device that might be unpowered for months you definitely do not want to use flash to store the boot ROM, or there's a good chance it will have lost bits and fail to boot. EEPROM has a 10-15 year shelf life. Mask ROM lasts forever, which is why those 70s/80s era calculators still work...

  4. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    When can a consumer buy a 10TB drive for about $300? These game collections aren't getting any smaller, you know, and flash doesn't have to be tremendously faster than spinning rust to gain a lot of practicality.

  5. Steve Davies 3 Silver badge

    When will we see them?

    The price of 1TB SSD's has been dropping and 128Gb ones are dirt cheap now but anything more than 1TB still costs silly money.

    So yes, where are the 4TB or 8TB Consumer SSD's? I'd really like to get rid of rotating rust ASAP.

  6. Flakk Silver badge

    If Only It Worked That Way

    When can a consumer buy a 10TB drive for about $300? These game collections aren't getting any smaller, you know

    Tech waits for no one, AC. By the time a 10TB flash drive retails for $300, games will probably be running at 8K and each will require 400GB of storage for its textures.

  7. Throatwarbler Mangrove Silver badge
    Facepalm

    Ugh, I went shopping last year on Newegg for new system components, and they were selling a 4TB Samsung flash drive for around $600. A 4TB hybrid drive was only a quarter the price, so I bought that instead; looking at the prices now, I wish I'd just coughed up for the flash drive!

  8. Charles 9 Silver badge

    Re: If Only It Worked That Way

    "Tech waits for no one, AC. By the time a 10TB flash drive retails for $300, games will probably be running at 8K and each will require 400GB of storage for its textures."

    BluRays will have to catch up in capacity first as they're still the go-to medium for the consoles (which now support 4K), and last I checked, they're still limited to 100GB. Meanwhile, the biggest single title I've seen from Steam has been Final Fantasy XV (~85GB).

  9. eldakka Silver badge

    Re: If Only It Worked That Way

    > BluRays will have to catch up in capacity first as they're still the go-to medium for the consoles (which now support 4K), and last I checked, they're still limited to 100GB.

    First thing most console games do after slipping in the BluRay (for AAA titles that are 10's of GB sized) is go out to ye old Internets and download another 50GB of patches...

    So the capacity of the BluRay isn't really relevant, these days it's really just a 'keydisk' system more than a content delivery system.

  10. Charles 9 Silver badge

    Re: If Only It Worked That Way

    "So the capacity of the BluRay isn't really relevant, these days it's really just a 'keydisk' system more than a content delivery system."

    Not true, as some consoles are airgapped, or is an Internet connection a listed requirement these days? Plus downloading 50GB of patches isn't an option, either, as many end users have issues of data caps.

  11. Rabbit80

    Re: If Only It Worked That Way

    "Meanwhile, the biggest single title I've seen from Steam has been Final Fantasy XV (~85GB)."

    Forza Motorsport 7 on PC manages 99.8GB although not on Steam. I had to download it twice as somehow my installation corrupted!

  12. Boothy Silver badge

    Re: If Only It Worked That Way

    I wonder how much longer discs will even be an option for consoles?

    PC games on disc died years ago once digital download became common and easy (i.e. Steam, then later platforms from Ubisoft and EA, GoG etc).

    Discs simply died as PC gamers just started downloading everything, plus brick & mortar shops started to no longer stock PC disks, as fewer people were buying them, which just pushed more PC gamers to download instead. Now you don't see PC games on disc, despite being a buoyant and active market.

    I can already see console games going this same route. All modern consoles now have (and have for a while now) got easy to use on line market places. The only discs I have for my XBox One S are some that I got when it was bought. All other purchases since have been digital downloads. (I only buy a few, as I'm mostly a PC gamer). Plus DLC/expansion are always downloads as far as I know.

    My console only playing friends have also mostly been doing downloads, with very few disc purchases in the last year or so.

    If this continues, I can imagine a future, and not that far away, where publishers stop providing discs versions, and only do digital downloads, just like the PC market did.

  13. Flakk Silver badge

    Re: If Only It Worked That Way

    I have no doubt that consoles will eventually follow PC into a wholly digital distribution paradigm, but I'd be surprised if that occurred before the next gen (PS5/Xbox4). I don't think that high-speed Internet has penetrated deeply enough to make digital-only viable for consoles.

    Aside from that, I will personally never own a digital-only console. Paying $60 (in the US, anyway) for a digital copy of a game is madness. It has all of the costs associated with physical copies, but few of the benefits (loan/trade/resell rights, irrevocable right to use the software, et cetera). Sadly, it doesn't seem that PC gamers have much choice, and I am astonished at how eagerly some console gamers give up their rights to real ownership of their expensive purchases.

    OK, back to yelling at clouds. ;)

  14. Charles 9 Silver badge

    Re: If Only It Worked That Way

    "loan/trade/resell rights, irrevocable right to use the software, et cetera"

    They've already found ways around this by use of value-added material that ONLY applies if the game is bought new (usually through one-time-use codes packed in the box--they've been around since at least Forza Motorsport 3). As for the price, I usually wait until they're on sale, and online sales can usually beat the B&M sales because there are lower publishing and pressing costs.

  15. Alan Brown Silver badge

    1980s...

    There was a time when I had to use a manufacturer-specific programmer designed for 2732s to program those up, then rip 'em, read 'em and program that lot into 27c512s on a custom board rigged up to allow us to stuff the equivalent of 32 2732s into the physical space (we discovered that they were only using half the address space as they'd originally designed for 2716s but by the time they'd shipped those were no longer available)

  16. Simon Harris Silver badge

    Re: 1980s...

    Does anyone else remember the 2532, with its annoyingly subtle different pin-out from the 2732?

  17. Charles 9 Silver badge

    PS. Reading the article shows how they terrace the layers to buy some space. I wonder if the next step from there is to staircase all around the via and use that to get to 128 layers and so on?

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