More Gloom and Doom in the Struggling DRAM Market

Paul Lilly

DRAM chip makers can quit singing the summertime blues, but only because autumn is right around the corner and not because prices and profits are up. There was a point when making memory chips was almost like printing money, at least before the market got turned on its head. Now things are at an all time low.

According to news and rumor site DigiTimes , DRAM chip suppliers face continued falling prices as the result of an oversupply. The spot price for 2Gb (gigabit) DDR3 tumbled below $1, with some types of chips (same-density effectively tested, or eTT) dropping all the way down to $0.70.

Chip makers were hopeful that the emerging tablet market would turn things around, but it hasn't been enough; comparatively weak PC sales aren't helping their cause either.

There is, however, a silver lining, at least for some. While chip makers aren't able to drive prices up, Samsung's move to 20nm will drive production costs down, while other DRAM players experiment with diversifying their product lines and coming up with ways to improve efficiency on the production line.

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