Yangtze Memory Technologies Co., Ltd (YMTC), today announced that its 128-layer 1.33Tb QLC 3D NAND flash memory chip, X2-6070, has passed sample verification on the SSD platform through co-working with multiple controller partners. As the first QLC based 128-layer 3D NAND, X2-6070 has achieved the highest bit density, highest I/O speed and highest capacity so far among all released flash memory parts in the industry. Accompanying this release, YMTC introduced a 128-layer 512Gb TLC (3 bit/cell) chip, X2-9060, to meet diversified application requirements.
Compared with TLC, QLC has notable features including large capacity, cost-effectiveness, and efficiency for read-intensive applications. Each X2-6070 QLC chip has 128 layers of array stacks and contains more than 366 billion effective charge-trap memory cells. As a single memory cell contains 4-bit data, each chip provides a total of 1.33 Tb storage capacity.
QLC is widely used in USB sticks already. It is also widely used in products such as camera memory cards and embedded products. Mobile phones use vast amounts of flash memory and China has a lot of users. Mobile phones with 32GB of flash memory are comparatively affordable already.
Expectations that YMTC will be able to ramp up volume production later this year and into 2021. This will create a new equilibrium as the supply curve moves average selling prices lower which increases demand. YMTC could see a 25-35% decrease per TB in SSD prices in 2021.
YTMC has government backing so the success of the company will have long term stability. CapEx spending has been high as the factory had to be built from scratch.
In September 2019, 64-layer TLC 3D NAND flash memory with innovative Xtacking architecture was officially put into mass-production. Now the new 128-layer NAND chips will allow for capacity improvements in a range of products.