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The German Word for Bankrupt is.....Bankrupt

Qimonda, at one time the second largest DRAM manufacturer in the world, has filed for insolvency under German law, the equivalent of Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection in the United States. Such action provides creditor protection while it reorganizes its operations and restructures its debt.

Formed from the memory technology assets of Infineon in 2006, Qimonda was hit hard both by falling DRAM prices and the global credit crunch. Its name never really caught on either, as the Infineon brand was well known worldwide. It also sounded much cooler.

Qimonda was one of the first DRAM manufacturers to build on 300mm wafers, greatly lowering production costs but requiring costly initial investments. It now ranks fourth in production, behind Samsung, Hynix, and Elpida.

They had a much vaunted strategic alliance with Nanya through their joint venture Inotera Memories, but split after Nanya decided not to pursue development of Qimonda's Buried Wordline Technology. Qimonda sold its stake in Inotera to Micron last October.

Qimonda is currently dependent on its "Deep Trench" technology in comparison to the standard stacked capacitors of most DRAM manufacturers. Deep Trench technology has the potential for much smaller die sizes, along with lower power consumption due to lower current leakage. This makes it ideal for notebooks and netbooks, allowing for greater battery life.

However, Qimonda has had trouble in transitioning to lower process geometries due to technical hurdles in this esoteric technology.

Similar troubles have delayed its new evolutionary Buried Wordline Technology, which incorporated Deep Trench technology along with lower costs and a simplified manufacturing process. It featured unprecedented die sizes for DRAM, which would have made it extremely cost effective to produce on 300mm lines. They predicted that a 46nm line using Buried Wordline would produce four times as many dies as a 75nm Deep Trench line on 300mm.

In November 2008, Qimonda announced initial sales of 1Gb DDR2 using 65nm, and sampling of 46nm 2Gb DDR3 using Buried Wordline. It wanted to introduce mass production of 46nm 2Gb DDR3 in the middle of 2009, to compete with 50nm DDR3 chips from Samsung and Elpida.

It is unclear how much their product development will be affected. Their roadmap currently includes plans to produce 32nm DDR3 in 2010.

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RE: There go prices
By othercents on 1/23/2009 4:35:34 PM , Rating: 1
Demand is still low and there is still overstock in memory, so I doubt this will effect prices in the immediate future especially since they are filing for bankruptcy protection and not closing their doors.


RE: There go prices
By etherreal on 1/23/2009 5:17:00 PM , Rating: 2
Since no DRAM maker is making money, prices will have to go up at some point. Most likely when the least competitve makers get shaken out of the market.

RE: There go prices
By 67STANG on 1/23/09, Rating: -1
RE: There go prices
By PrinceGaz on 1/23/2009 7:43:10 PM , Rating: 2
If only they would have done price fixing like the LCD makers, this wouldn't have happened. =)

They tried that a few years ago, and got hit with serious fines.

RE: There go prices
By nilepez on 1/23/2009 11:55:08 PM , Rating: 2
The new technology is DDR3, which is significantly more expensive, and I suspect they make money off of them too. However, as long as DDR2 is reasonable, and Intel is supporting that on Core2 chip sets, I don't see much changing.

In the desktop space, the demand for I7 chips will be limited until prices drop dramatically. As it stands, even if you get an i7 for 150, it'd still cost you significantly more than a Core2 rig, thanks to MB and RAM prices.

RE: There go prices
By Penti on 1/24/2009 6:00:16 PM , Rating: 2
It's the Core i5 that will be the mainstream in the desktop segment.

"Young lady, in this house we obey the laws of thermodynamics!" -- Homer Simpson
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