"Phase change memory (PCM) — an emerging
non-volatile technology pioneered by Intel (NASDAQ: INTC), Numonyx,
Samsung and others — could turn out to be a low-cost, more
reliable, faster, and just plain better alternative to flash memory
(see I/O Bottlenecks: Biggest Threat to Data Storage).
"Some industry insiders even believe PCM has the potential to
accelerate the data storage market's slow transition from hard disk
drives (HDDs) to solid state drives (SSDs).
"One of the believers is Ed Doller, the chief technology officer
of Numonyx, a joint venture created by Intel and
""PCM is a very promising alternative to flash that should allow
the industry to continue the transition from HDDs to SSDs with
confidence," says Doller. Early Days for PCM
"However, PCM is still at the fab stage, and the technology
faces a number of issues still. When will Numonyx and Samsung
(which is developing market specs for PCM products with Numonyx)
deliver products in commercial quantities? Will the cost of the
products be price-competitive with flash memory?"