Intel, AMD get DDR 266 support

Spate of products close to release

Via Technical Forum A senior executive at Micron today forecast that a spate of double data rate (DDR) products were set to hit the market in the next three months.

Micron, we must remember, as well as being in litigation with Rambus Ink over alleged patent infringement on synchronous DRAM and DDR memory, is also a Rambus licensee.

But Brett Williams, senior marketing manager at Micron in the US, made perhaps the clearest statement we've yet heard on the work that is not only in progress on DDR but on that which is already complete.

Speaking on the eve of Via's Technology Forum 2000, Williams, who managed not to utter the Rambus word during his presentation, nevertheless said the DDR platform was en route for proliferation.

He said that in the fourth quarter (October to December inclusive?), the market will see numerous vendors rolling out DDR solutions.

Williams said those would include not just PC vendors, but networking and consumer companies too.

Price would be the factor that influence the market most, he said, while the memory manufacturers, nearly all of which were developing DDR solutions, had agreed on form factors and layouts to diminish any compatibility problems that might occur.

Micron has already qualified its 64Mbit DDR solution, while its 128Mbit solution would be qualified by the end of September, and its 256Mbit samples would do so by year end, he said.

The DDR infrastructure was also in place, said Williams, including support from socket manufacturers, BIOS makers, and the others involved in pushing the solution.

"With DDR, Jedec (the memory standards body) set out an entire datasheet and all designs are manufactured that datasheet," he said.

"SO-DIMMs [there must be a joke here somewhere, Ed] have also been finalised by the taskforce," he said.

Williams said the goals of DDR included the ability to give double the bandwidth with less power. Those goals have been achieved and DDR is ready, he said, not only from the memory vendors but from the other parties including the core logic vendors.

It all seems to add up to something, sure enough. As we reported over the weekend, Intel itself has teams of third parties independently evaluating the DDR memory platform.

Via will definitely be doing multiple DDR chipsets, and of course, AMD is likely to do the same.

In fact, Via formally announced its support of DDR 266 at a press conference hosted by CEO Wen-Chi Chen today, and said it would implement the memory in the Apollo Pro 266 and Apollo KT 266 chipsets -- which support Intel's Socket 270 and AMD's Socket A.

Wen-Chi claimed: "Via is enabling a rapid industry wide transition to DDR memory on both the leading processor platforms."

The Via Technology Forum starts tomorrow and La Reg will be here to listen to the different supporting parties, before it moves to Tokyo, Beijing, and Prague, before turning up just in time for the Oktoberfest in Munich. ®

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