Advanced solid-state memory is a type of computer memory system that has no moving parts and is stored within a hardware device. Some of the widely used solid-state memory technologies are Static Random Access Memory (SRAM), Dynamic Random Access Memory (DRAM) and flash. These technologies are combined to form a universal memory with the selected properties of SRAM, DRAM and flash. They are then implemented in various applications by eliminating the need for multiple memories and thereby improving the system performance.
SRAM requires little power for data retention, has excellent speeds for performing read and write tasks and integrates readily into embedded applications. However, the disadvantage of SRAM is its large cell size that makes it difficult to be implemented in embedded applications requiring a huge amount of disk space. Embedded SRAM is used in microprocessors where high speed is a major concern than large amount of memory.
In DRAM, a single transistor and storage capacitor per cell is used thereby providing a denser architecture as compared to SRAM. DRAM requires consistent power supply to refresh because of the leakage of the stored charge out of the capacitor. Due to this consumption of high power, the application of DRAM in portable electronics with limited battery life is impractical.
Flash memory, as compared to SRAM and DRAM, offers non-volatile data storage i.e. the data stored is not lost in an event of power failure. Flash memories are preferred in portable electronics because there is no consumption of battery power for retaining non-volatile data. They also have fast read access time and high density, but, due to its low write endurance it has limited number of applications. Also, embedded flash requires its own voltage drivers thereby complicating the manufacturing and design process.
There are various factors that are contributing to the growth of advanced solid state memory systems market. Many organizations need large disk space to save various types of data like presentations, audio files, emails, databases and spread sheets. Sometimes the data is very critical in nature as it plays a vital role in protecting the business establishments. These growing storage demands play an imperative part in contributing to the growth of solid-state systems market. Also, frequent attacks of viruses, encourage business organizations to backup their data which requires a lot of backup space. Further, due to legal reasons, business establishments are archiving their e-mail messages dating back to more than five years. Similarly, in cloud applications too, there is a huge requirement for high storage systems which cannot be overcome by disk based storage systems.
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Another driver that is contributing to the growth of this market includes the efficient power consumption as compared to other forms of memory technologies. This is a reason for solid state memory technologies replacing traditional memory systems for numerous benefits like higher endurance and faster switching time that it offers. However, the issues arising from high storage densities such as costs and architectural issues are affecting the growth of this market. Since solid state memory is an emerging technology, the cost of implementing such system is sometimes unaffordable. Also, the cost involved in the designing phase is high as compared to other memory systems.
The advanced solid-state memory systems market is segmented on the basis of applications for various purposes. On the basis of applications, the market can be segmented into embedded applications, storage, server and data centers. The embedded applications segment majorly contributes to the market because solid state technologies eliminate the need for multiple memory systems.
The key players in the market include Adesto Technologies Corporation Inc., Crocus Technology and Micron Technology, Inc. These companies are frequently coming up with innovative systems to expand their range of applications. For instance, Adesto Technologies Corporation Inc., on August 5, 2014, introduced memory system with properties such as less power consumption and sterilization-tolerant which can be used for medical applications.
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