September 09, 1999 in Social Responsibility News

SAMSUNG Begins Mass Production of Second-Generation Rambus(R) DRAM

SEOUL, Korea - September 9, 1999 - The market for next-generation high-speed DRAMS is set to explode with the launch of Intel's Camino chipset. In conjunction with the Camino launch, Samsung Electronics is now mass-producing 2nd-generation Rambus DRAMs (RDRAM(R)) in a bid to lead this next-generation high-speed DRAM market.

Samsung Electronics is at least six months ahead of other DRAM manufacturers in completing development of the second-generation RDRAM. Being the first to mass-produce the device for supply to PC manufacturers, the company expects to capture at least 60-percent of the world market for the high-speed devices. Samsung Electronics officials expect sales of the second-generation RDRAM to reach US$250 million this year. Next year, when other DRAM vendors enter the market, Samsung Electronics still plans to hold at least 35% of the market and to achieve sales in excess of US$2 to US$3 billion.

This past January, Samsung Electronics came out with the first-generation RDRAM, a device with 0.23-micron circuitry. The second-generation RDRAM is 30-percent smaller and uses 0.19-micron processing technology. Samsung has applied chip shrinkage technology to achieve cost competitiveness over its rivals.

The second-generation RDRAM is being supplied to major customers either as 144Mb or 128Mb RDRAM components or as modules. The 144Mb and 128Mb RDRAM components, as well as a 256Mb module have all been quality certified by the Intel Validation test program. In addition, Samsung Electronics plans to begin producing a 256Mb RDRAM device starting next year.

The finest processing technology and fastest signal processing technology allow the RDRAM to perform at speeds of up to 1.6Gb (the equivalent of 128 standard newspaper pages of data) per second. This is ten times faster than the PC-100 synchronous DRAMs used as the main memory in personal computers.

The RDRAM can be used in a full range of applications where high-speed processing is needed such as video games, and high-performance PCs and workstations that handle 3D graphics and moving pictures. This device is also expected to bring the performance of information and communications products to a new level.

Intel's launch of the next-generation Camino chipset is expected to create a major market for RDRAMs. At the '99 Intel Developer Forum (held last week), six major DRAM manufacturers, including Samsung Electronics, committed to work toward the reduction of the RDRAM cost premium. Now that Samsung has its second-generation RDRAMs ready for market, the new devices are expected to be used in Pentium III-based computers starting this September.

Applications that require super-fast memory are increasing rapidly. Thus, RDRAM demand is forecast to represent 30-percent of the entire DRAM market in 2000 and to increase to 50% of all DRAMs sold by 2001.

Samsung Electronics Co., Ltd., with 1998 sales revenue of US$16.6 billion, is a world leader in the electronics industry. The Korea-based firm has operations in 46 countries and employs 42,000 people worldwide. The company consists of three main business divisions: Multimedia & Home Appliances, Semiconductors and Information & Telecommunications. For more information, please visit our website,

All brands or product names are trademarks or registered trademarks of their respective holders. Rambus and RDRAM are registered trademarks of Rambus Inc.

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