NAND Flash


[News] Memory Giants Plan DDR5, HBM Expansion; No Immediate Impact on Taiwanese DDR4 Pricing

The recovery of the memory industry is evident, with Taiwanese companies such as Macronix, Nanya Technology, and Transcend all showing month-on-month revenue growth in December last year. Additionally, contract prices for DRAM and NAND Flash are expected to continue rising in the first quarter of 2024. However, the global second-largest memory manufacturer, SK Hynix, plans a expansion, introducing a variable element to the memory market.

According to a report by the Commercial Times, SK Hynix disclosed that it might reduce the scale of DRAM production cuts in the first quarter, while adjustments to the NAND Flash production strategy may occur in the second or third quarter, depending on the situation.

In response to major memory manufacturers’ expansion plans, Taiwanese memory firms believe that Hynix’s expansion should focus primarily on DDR5 and HBM (High-Bandwidth Memory) products. Nevertheless, Taiwan currently specializes in DDR4 products, and it is not expected to impact product pricing.

According to a press release from TrendForce published this week, the DRAM contract prices are estimated to increase by approximately 13–18% in 1Q24 with mobile DRAM leading the surge. It appears that due to the unclear demand outlook for the entire year of 2024, manufacturers believe that sustained production cuts are necessary to maintain the supply-demand balance in the memory industry.

For consumer DRAM, manufacturers are aggressively raising contract prices, which has prompted buyers to stockpile early. This has greatly improved purchasing momentum. However, the first quarter coincides with the industry’s off-season, and end sales are expected to be weak and lead to increased inventory levels due to buyers’ early stocking strategies.

Manufacturers generally believe that in 2024—with the expanding penetration of HBM and DDR5 each quarter—low-margin DDR4 capacity will be crowded out, thereby leading to shortages. As such, DDR4 contract prices are expected to outpace DDR3 in the first quarter by 10–15%. DDR3 continues to be supplied by Taiwanese manufacturers, and with generally high inventory levels, its contract price increase is estimated at 8–13% for 1Q24.

(Image: SK Hynix)

Please note that this article cites information from Commercial Times


[Insights] Light Trading, Stable DRAM and NAND Flash Spot Prices

Based on TrendForce’s weekly memory spot price trends released every Wednesday, due to the year-end holiday period, the spot market for DRAM and NAND Flash experiences light trading, and prices remain relatively stable. For details, please refer to the information below:

DRAM Spot Market:

Due to the year-end holiday period, the spot market has been quiet recently and showed no notable price fluctuations. The spot market is also relatively unaffected by smartphone brands’ restocking activities, so the overall sentiment is fairly conservative. Some spot sellers have begun to raise quotes for DRAM chips since January 2, but the demand quantities are insufficient to push up transaction prices. The average spot price of mainstream chips (i.e., DDR4 1Gx8 2666MT/s) rose by 2.54% from US$1.773 last week to US$1.818 this week.

NAND Flash Spot Market:

Transactions have been rather sluggish from the spot market amidst the holiday period, with no apparent price fluctuations. The spot market is not as affected by the recent stock-up demand for smartphones and SSD, and has been relatively conservative in general sentiment, where the lack of demand is insufficient in pulling up concluded prices even with the aggressive ramp up of wafer quotations among several sellers since the beginning of the year. 512Gb TLC wafer has dropped by 0.29% in spot prices, arriving at US$3.117.


[News] SK Hynix Aims for Doubling Market Value in 3 Years, Considering Alteration On its Production Cut Plan for Q1

SK Hynix CEO Kwak Noh-Jung expressed optimism at the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in the United States, stating that artificial intelligence (AI) chips would propel SK Hynix’s market value to double within three years, reaching KRW 200 trillion (approximately USD 152 billion).

Kwak also revealed plans to adjust the DRAM production reduction policy in the first quarter, while anticipating changes in NAND Flash production strategy in the latter half of the year.

At the CES exhibition in Las Vegas, Kwak emphasized that generative AI is gradually becoming widespread, and memories are increasingly crucial. With the advancement of AI systems, customer demands for memory will become more diverse. Kwak highlighted the development of a platform to offer customized options for various customers.

“If we prepare the products we are currently producing well, pay attention to maximising investment efficiency and maintaining financial soundness, I think we can attempt to double the current market capitalisation of 100 trillion won to 200 trillion won within three years,” Kwak said.

Kwak further stated in the CES: “There are only three HBM providers in the market. What I can say for sure is that SK Hynix is a clear leader in the HBM space.”

For the current HBM market, as reported by TrendForce earlier, SK hynix holds the lead in HBM3 production, serving as the principal supplier for NVIDIA’s server GPUs.

Samsung, on the other hand, is focusing on satisfying orders from other CSPs. The gap in market share between Samsung and SK hynix is expected to narrow significantly in 2023 due to an increasing number of orders for Samsung from CSPs. Both firms are predicted to command similar shares in the HBM market sometime between 2023 to 2024—collectively occupying around 95%.

Meanwhile, when asked if SK Hynix would ease its current chip production reduction policy, Kwak responded that the company’s policies are flexible and will be adjusted based on different product categories.

He mentioned that SK Hynix might change its DRAM production reduction policy in the first quarter, while adjustments for NAND Flash are anticipated to take place in the latter half of the year.

Read more

(Photo credit: SK Hynix)

Please note that this article cites information from Reuters and Bloomberg


[News] Samsung and Micron Rumored to Increase DRAM Prices by 15% to 20% in the First Quarter

Global memory giants continue to reduce production, coupled with the situation where market demand is increasing due to the rise in artificial intelligence and high-performance computing applications, as well as inventory replenishment from the smartphone market. This combination is driving a continuous increase in memory prices, especially the astonishing surge in NAND Flash.

According to a report from TechNews, there are once again rumors in the market today that the upward trend in DRAM prices is resurfacing. This includes plans from both Samsung and Micron to implement a price increase ranging from 15% to 20% in the first quarter of 2024.

Currently, the market anticipates tight DRAM supply in 2024 due to the increasing adoption of artificial intelligence and high-performance computing, along with a gradual recovery in the smartphone and PC markets. As the contract price negotiation for the first quarter is underway, industry sources reveal that memory manufacturers have begun adjusting DRAM prices since January, urging customers to plan for future usage demands.

There are reports in the market that Samsung recently announced that DRAM prices will increase by at least 15% starting in the first quarter of 2024. While there is no clear indication of the NAND Flash memory price hike at the moment, it is expected to continue to rise. The upward trend in DRAM prices is expected to persist until the end of 2024.

Apart from Samsung, Micron, with a modest 2-3% increase in DRAM prices in December 2023, lower than the 10% increase in 3D TLC NAND, is reportedly considering a DRAM price hike of around 15-20%.

Regarding the price trend of DRAM in the first quarter of 2024, TrendForce currently maintains a forecast of a seasonally increased average of 13-18%, with the highest increase observed in the mobile DRAM category, while server DRAM appears relatively conservative. According to TrendForce’s observation, due to the uncertain demand outlook for the entire year 2024, memory manufacturers believe that a continued reduction in production is necessary to maintain the supply-demand balance in the memory industry.

Read more

(Image: Samsung )

Please note that this article cites information from TechNews


[Tech Recap and Glimpse 5-3] Can Memory Prices Sustain the Upward Trend Next Year?

The ongoing reduction in production by major manufacturers throughout this year has gradually restored balance to the market supply and demand. This is beneficial for chip manufacturers to regain control over prices. Signs of a bottoming out and rebound have emerged in the memory market in the third quarter of this year.

TrendForce data reveals that the overall price of DRAM has been declining since 4Q21 and only began to rebound in 4Q23, marking a total decline over 8 quarters. As for NAND Flash, the overall price started declining from 3Q22 and began to rebound from 3Q23, totaling a decline over 4 quarters.

However, despite the recovery in demand, achieving effective destocking and returning to a state of supply-demand equilibrium next year still heavily relies on suppliers exercising restraint in production capacity. If suppliers can control production capacity appropriately, there is a chance for the average memory prices to continue their rebound.

Read more

(Photo credit: Samsung)

  • Page 2
  • 17 page(s)
  • 82 result(s)