IBM, together with the Macronix and Qimonda research team, has demonstrated a device that claims to be the "Flash-killer." Why? Apparently, the prototype storage device is 500 times faster than Flash and uses less than half the power of Flash memory and can be built in super thin form factors.
The prototype would be showing what its got on the Institute of Electronics and Electrical Engineer's (IEEE) conference in San Francisco which happens this week. For those techies who want details, the IBM thingamajig uses a new Germanium-Antimony semi-conductor alloy in a device with a 3nm by 20nm cross section.
In layman's terms - it is smaller than today's flash and it is something that would take ages to perfect. Aside from that, the 500 time faster than flash memory is also blessed with a less than one-half the power consumption. Commercial availability - 2015
The IBM-Macronix-Qimonda project isn't the only one trying to do this. Samsung is also developing their very own phase-change RAM (PRAM) which is 30 times faster than flash and is targetted for a 2008 release. Intel and ST Microelectronics are doing the same thing and Elpida is targetting for a 2010 start of commercial PRAM production.