| SanDisk and Qimonda have an SnQi joint venture to produce NAND flash and DRAM multi-chip packages (MCP) for mobile phones. It has moved into volume production according to DigiTimes.
Mobile phones typically use NOR flash for long-term storage but NAND flash is cheaper and storage capacities for mobile phones are going up and up and up. SanDisk makes a wide range of NAND flash prodicts and Qimonda is a DRAM manufacturer.
It is simpler and more cost-effective for mobile phone handset manufacturers to buy in a complete DRAM and flash package rather than get separate chips and integrate them themselves.
SnQi says it has made design wins already with both US and Taiwan-based handset manufacturers who are designing the MCPs into forthcoming handsets. The MCP integrates single-level cell (SLC) NAND flash and integrated-circuit controllers from SanDisk with low-power DRAM chips from Qimonda.
It's likely that multi-level cell (MLC) flash will double and even triple the NAND flash capacities possible in future.
Thomas Chong, SnQi marketing director, thinks NAND flash will replace NOR flash in handsets, which is bad news, if true, for the NOR manufacturers.