Feeds

Toshiba turns up heat at flash chip plant

NAND demand outstripping capacity

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

Eight steps to building an HP BladeSystem

Toshiba admitted yesterday that it is struggling to keep up with demand for flash memory after announcing plans to accelerate production at its latest fab.

At the same time, according to Reuters, the Japanese company is upping the amount it will spend on new chip manufacturing capacity this year by 13 per cent to 203bn yen ($1.92bn).

Corporate Vice President Masashi Muromachi told Reuters that the company’s current capacity could “in no way” meet demand for NAND flash products, singling out Apple’s iPod shuffle as one factor in the current buying frenzy.

Toshiba and flash partner SanDisk officially opened their latest plant, in Yokkaichi, western Japan this week. The firms said the expected output of the new factory will be 10,000 wafers per month by the end of this year, ahead of its original schedule. This will rise to over 40,000 wafers per month by the first half of 2007, and the companies could increase this further. SanDisk and Toshiba expect global demand for NAND-type flash memory chips to grow to ¥2.1 trillion ($19.86bn) in 2008 from ¥700bn ($6bn) in 2004.

The scramble to increase flash capacity will no doubt inspire trepidation amongst some chip industry watchers. The chip industry’s own trade groups, such as the Semiconductor Industry Association, regularly point out its tendency towards boom and bust. There is no reason to expect that demand for flash will not continue to balloon. However, historically, when the industry rushes to put new capacity in place, it inevitably triggers supply gluts further down the line trashing prices if not demand.

Related stories

Toshiba, SanDisk prep 1GB Flash chip

Alleged Apple Flash iPod 'partner' signs with Rio

'iPod Flash chip partner' hikes Q4 sales forecast

Mobile application security vulnerability report

More from The Register

next story
BBC goes offline in MASSIVE COCKUP: Stephen Fry partly muzzled
Auntie tight-lipped as major outage rolls on
iPad? More like iFAD: We reveal why Apple fell into IBM's arms
But never fear fanbois, you're still lapping up iPhones, Macs
White? Male? You work in tech? Let us guess ... Twitter? We KNEW it!
Grim diversity numbers dumped alongside Facebook earnings
Bose says today IS F*** With Dre Day: Beats sued in patent battle
Music gear giant seeks some of that sweet, sweet Apple pie
HP, Microsoft prove it again: Big Business doesn't create jobs
SMEs get lip service - what they need is dinner at the Club
ITC: Seagate and LSI can infringe Realtek patents because Realtek isn't in the US
Land of the (get off scot) free, when it's a foreign owner
Amazon Reveals One Weird Trick: A Loss On Almost $20bn In Sales
Investors really hate it: Share price plunge as growth SLOWS in key AWS division
Dude, you're getting a Dell – with BITCOIN: IT giant slurps cryptocash
1. Buy PC with Bitcoin. 2. Mine more coins. 3. Goto step 1
prev story

Whitepapers

Top three mobile application threats
Prevent sensitive data leakage over insecure channels or stolen mobile devices.
Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Boost IT visibility and business value
How building a great service catalog relieves pressure points and demonstrates the value of IT service management.
Designing a Defense for Mobile Applications
Learn about the various considerations for defending mobile applications - from the application architecture itself to the myriad testing technologies.
Build a business case: developing custom apps
Learn how to maximize the value of custom applications by accelerating and simplifying their development.