We all know about Samsung, the mobile handset maker, but how many of you know about Samsung, the component maker? They make the screens, processors, memory chips, and storage solutions that are found in a majority of the phones on the market today. This week the South Korean company is announcing that they’ve begun production on 4 gigabit 20 nanometer low power DDR2 memory. In other words, RAM. Today’s handset makers stack four 2 gigabit chips on top of each other to give their phones 8 gigabits of RAM, better known as 1 gigabyte. These new chips, being double the size, will enable smartphones with 2 gigabytes of RAM. Not only that, but this 2 GB package of RAM is also 20% less tall the equivalent 2 GB package built using 30 nanometer chips.
When will this stuff actually end up in phones that you’ll be able to buy from your local electronics store? Samsung quotes iSuppli in their press release, who says:
“Shipments of 4Gb LPDDR2 will steadily increase, taking approximately 13 percent of total DRAM shipments in 2012, 49 percent in 2013 and 63 percent in 2014, with 4Gb DRAM becoming the mainstream chip in the DRAM market around the end of 2013.”
So we’ll see a handful of phones come out this year with 2 GB of RAM onboard, such as the LG Optimus LTE II and the Japanese version of the Galaxy S III, but it’s going to be next year when things get really exciting. What’s a phone going to do with all that RAM anyhow? We’ll find out soon enough. The guys who write the operating systems that power our phones have no problem finding ways to make us feel like whatever came out just 12 months ago is now an inferior piece of junk.
It’s kind of crazy when you think about it, how much power these pocket sized lumps of plastic have. When do you think we’ll see a phone that’s as powerful as the laptops of today are?