WDC Issues Contamination Update

Photo of author in bunny suit holding wafer with Jolly RogerWestern Digital today shared an update on the material contamination that impacted the joint-venture manufacturing facilities that the company shares with Kioxia.

Although the company increased its estimate of the loss from 6.5 exabytes to 7 exabytes, this number is still in the realm of 3.5% of WDC’s annual NAND flash shipments.  It represents about two Continue reading “WDC Issues Contamination Update”

Five New Briefs: YMTC, SK hynix, Intel, and a Forecast

Five briefs on top of each otherAs we have been doing since mid-January, we introduce another five of our Objective Analysis Briefs this week, bringing the total this year to 35.

This week’s release covers three companies, YMTC, SK hynix, and Intel, and one explains the process we used in 2020 to create our 2021 forecast, with and without a pandemic-driven Continue reading “Five New Briefs: YMTC, SK hynix, Intel, and a Forecast”

Are Memory Chips Commodities? (Part 2)

Photo of an old financial document bearing the title Commodity ExchangeThis post is the second of a two-part series on The Memory Guy explaining commodities, and especially how they relate to memory chips.  Part 1 defines a commodity and explains its attributes.  Part 2 explains the commodity cycle, showing that lessons cam be learned from other commodity markets.


Nobody really likes the Continue reading “Are Memory Chips Commodities? (Part 2)”

New Briefs: Strategy, Policy, & World Events

Five briefs on top of each otherThis week Objective Analysis has introduced five briefs that fall into three categories: Business strategies (Samsung, Kioxia, and Intel), government policy (US against SMIC), and world events (COVID).

In case you’re just learning about the Objective Analysis “Brief” format, the Brief is a short white paper used to make a Continue reading “New Briefs: Strategy, Policy, & World Events”

Contamination at WDC/Kioxia JV Fabs

Photo of author in bunny suit holding wafer with Jolly RogerBoth Western Digital (WDC) and Kioxia have announced a contamination issue at the companies’ two Flash Ventures wafer fabrication plants in Yokkaichi and Kitakami.   Let’s have a look at what’s been said so far as The Memory Guy gauges how important it will be for these companies and for the industry.

WDC was the first to announce the issue, with a brief but Continue reading “Contamination at WDC/Kioxia JV Fabs”

New Briefs Cover Diverse Subjects

Five briefs on top of each otherWith this week’s release of five more new Briefs, Objective Analysis is now a little more than halfway through the current wave of releases.  If you look through the Briefs listed on the Objective Analysis website you’ll find that they cover a diverse range of important semiconductor issues.

This week’s lineup covers the end of Continue reading “New Briefs Cover Diverse Subjects”

Are Memory Chips Commodities? (Part 1)

Photo of an old financial document bearing the title Commodity ExchangeThis post is the first of a two-part series explaining commodities, and especially how they relate to memory chips.  Part 1 defines a commodity and explains its attributes.  Part 2 explains the commodity cycle.


Often in my presentations The Memory Guy will refer to memory chips, particularly DRAM and NAND flash, as Continue reading “Are Memory Chips Commodities? (Part 1)”

Five More New Briefs Published

Five briefs on top of each otherToday, Groundhog’s Day, Objective Analysis is publishing another five of our Objective Analysis Briefs, rounding out 2022’s total of new documents to 20.  This week’s set covers even a more diverse range than those that we published in the past three weeks, with no overlap between any two Briefs’ subjects.  They range from forecast methodology and China’s semiconductor efforts to critically considering Continue reading “Five More New Briefs Published”

How 3D NAND Makes QLC and PLC Feasible

Four groups of dots representing the number of voltage levels in MLC, TLC, QLC, and PLC flash.Something that has really changed over the past few years is the use of an increasing numbers of voltage levels in multi-level cell flash, from SLC, to MLC, to TLC, and then QLC, with the promise of PLC (5 bits per cell) in the foreseeable future.  That means each PLC cell must be able to hold 32 voltage levels accurately, and the NAND chip’s control logic must be able to tell one level from the next.  This post’s graphic is intended to Continue reading “How 3D NAND Makes QLC and PLC Feasible”

This Week’s Round of Objective Analysis Briefs

Five briefs on top of each otherThis week’s newly-published Objective Analysis Briefs have just been released.  These five cover business strategies (Intel, WDC, and Everspin), policy issues, and quantum computing – quite a variety!  Each is derived from one of our most interesting and timeless “Insights” published on membership website Smartkarma.  Now Objective Analysis is making these studies available to Continue reading “This Week’s Round of Objective Analysis Briefs”