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IBM takes five-year DDR SDRAM route

But Rambus still looks like the winner

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The microelectronics division of IBM today outlined a five year roadmap for its memory offerings based on double data rate (DDR) technology. But Intel and AMD's backing of Direct Rambus looks set to make that technology the memory winner. IBM Micro said it had started shipping samples of 0.20-micron 256Mb DDR parts and would achieve volume ramp in the middle of next year. It has also started making 0.20-micron 64Mb parts. Its DDR-based roadmap extends for five years, including 0.175-micron 128Mb SDRAM towards the end of next year and 0.15-micron 256Mb SDRAM in the year 2001. According to Chris King, VP of worldwide marketing at IBM Micro, support for DDR is growing in the marketplace. "We believe it will emerge as the technology of choice, particularly for servers," he said. But Roy Taylor, joint MD of memory company VML, said there was little doubt Rambus will win the day. He said: "If you are a big manufacturer, you need an alternative to Rambus just in case. DDR will be used in graphics but on the desktop it's Direct Rambus all the way." He explained: "DDR and SyncLink will both give you a jump in bandwidth. On the other hand, Direct Rambus will take you far beyond that." Earlier this week, ten other manufacturers pledged their support for DDR. ®

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