DRAM transitions to 10nm for 5G and AI-powered mobile applications

Claimed to be the first 8Gbit LPDDR5 DRAM for 5G and AI-powered mobile applications, Samsung has unveiled its 10nm class memory. Samsung says that since bringing the first 8Gbit LPDDR4 to mass production in 2014, the company has been setting the stage to transition to the LPDDR5 standard for use in 5G and artificial intelligence (AI)-powered mobile applications.

The 8Gbit LPDDR5 has been added to Samsung’s premium DRAM lineup, which includes 10nm-class 16Gbit GDDR6 DRAM and 16Gbit DDR5 DRAM.

The 8Gbit LPDDR5 boasts a data rate of up to 6,400 Mbit per second, which is 1.5 times as fast as the mobile DRAM chips used in current flagship mobile devices (LPDDR4X, 4266 Mbits per second), says Samsung. With the increased transfer rate, the new LPDDR5 can send 51.2Gbytes of data, or approximately 14 full-HD video files (3.7Gbyte each), in a second.

The 10nm-class LPDDR5 DRAM will be available in two bandwidths – 6,400Mbits per second at a 1.1 operating voltage and 5,500Mbits per second at 1.05V. These options make the DRAM a versatile mobile memory for next-generation smartphones and automotive systems. To achieve this performance advance, Samsung doubled the number of memory ‘banks’ (sub divisions within a DRAM cell) from eight to 16. The LPDDR5 DRAM can attain a much higher speed while reducing power consumption, adds Samsung. The 8Gbit LPDDR5 also makes use of an advanced, speed-optimised circuit architecture that verifies and ensures the chip’s speed performance.

To maximise power savings, the 10nm-class LPDDR5 has been engineered to lower its voltage in accordance with the operating speed of the corresponding application processor, when in active mode. It also has been configured to avoid overwriting cells with ‘0’ values. There is also a ‘deep sleep mode’, which cuts the power usage to approximately half the ‘idle mode’ of the current LPDDR4X DRAM. As a result, the 8Gbit LPDDR5 DRAM will deliver power consumption reductions of up to 30 per cent, maximising mobile device performance and extending the battery life of smartphones.

Samsung says the LPDDR5 will be able to power AI and machine learning applications, and will be UHD-compatible for mobile devices worldwide.

Samsung, together with leading global chip vendors, has completed functional testing and validation of a prototype 8Gbyte LPDDR5 DRAM package, which is comprised of eight 8Gbit LPDDR5 chips.

http://www.samsung.com/semiconductor