The use of NAND flash memory in notebooks is expected to
increase sharply in the next few years. We've seen the steady rise in
availability of flash solid-state drives in the past few months from Adtron, Samsung and SanDisk. Dell has even
gone so far as to add SanDisk's
1.8" 32GB UATA 5000 SSD as a $450 option on its Latitude D420 and a
$300 option on its Latitude D620 ATG. The company is also currently offering
the drive by itself for a whopping $549 on its website.
Likewise, NAND flash is used onboard in Santa Rosa notebooks as a part of Intel’s Robson initiative. Last, but
certainly not least, NAND flash is also used in hybrid hard disk drives (HHDDs)
which are currently shipping
The falling prices coupled with the increased performance in
comparison to HDDs is what leads iSuppli Corp. to report that nearly 60 percent
of the 40.1 million notebooks that will be shipped during Q4 2009 will have
some means of flash storage onboard. "In 2003, 1Gbyte of NAND flash memory
was nearly 100 times as expensive as an equivalent quantity of HDD storage,
according to iSuppli. By 2009, that price gap will dwindle to a factor of
slightly less than 14," said Matthew Wilkins, principal analyst for
computer platforms at iSuppli.
iSuppli projects that 54 percent of the ultra-portable
notebook market will feature HHDDs while 28 percent will use SSDs by Q4 2009.
58 percent of mainstream notebooks will use HHDDs while 25 percent will use
SSDs. Ultra-portables and mainstream notebooks account for 10 percent and 57
percent respectively of overall mobile PC shipments.
research from DataQuest shows that SSD pricing will steadily decline in the
next three years. Currently, 1.8" SSDs are five times more expensive as
traditional 1.8" HDDs. By 2010, SSDs will be roughly three times as