This year’s worldwide sales of NAND flash, a type of memory chip used in storage products such as memory cards and USBs, are expected to grow about 14 percent from last year, partly on the back of the popularity of smartphones, a research report said yesterday.
The report by market information advisory firm iSuppli said the proliferation of gaming consoles and hybrid storage drives is also expected to serve as another driver for this year’s growth in sales.
The report said global NAND flash revenue is forecast to total US$23.1 billion this year, up from US$20.2 billion recorded last year.
“The NAND application picture continues to broaden as the influence of mobile devices deepens in segments like computing and consumer electronics,” iSuppli analyst Ryan Chien said in the report.
The report said that through the next generation of gaming consoles and other consumer electronics products, such as Sony’s PlayStation and Microsoft’s Xbox, the utilization of NAND flash is increasing, which is boosting revenue from that type of chip.
It said that while NAND flash sales in the second quarter of this year are expected to total slightly less than US$5.6 billion, revenue for each of the other three quarters are expected to surpass that level.
However, last year quarterly sales in only two of the four quarters exceeded US$5 billion, iSuppli said, adding that growth momentum for this year is expected to be robust compared with a year earlier.
The report said that due to rising demand, NAND flash prices have strengthened in recent months.
Last week, a report released by DRAMeXchange said NAND flash prices are expected to continue to rise in the second half of this month and beyond after rising by between 2 percent and 4 percent in the first half of the month from the second half of last month.
DRAMeXchange said the forecast was made based on an assumption that the peak season for the global electronics sector would boost demand in the second half of the year.