Samsung Still the Top Dog in DRAM Market

Paul Lilly

When you think of memory, Samsung probably isn't the first name to come to mind, but perhaps it should be. No other company produces more DRAM, and in the second quarter of 2010, Samsung further distanced itself from all competitors.

"Samsung's memory business long has pursued a strategy of taking the leadership in investment in new manufacturing processes, allowing it to be the first to move to advanced semiconductor process geometries, and thus enabling the company to make semiconductors at a lower cost and at greater efficiency than its competitors," said Mike Howard, senior analyst for DRAM technology at iSuppli. "The company's aggressive push into 40nm semiconductor lithography for DRAM manufacturing boosted the volume of its bit production dramatically. Meanwhile, Samsung's broad DRAM portfolio, including high-end devices like mobile and legacy parts, allowed it to achieve an ASP higher than the industry average."

Samsung cranked out 1.2 billion 1Gb density equivalent DRAM units in the second quarter, a 13 percent increase over its first quarter production and enough to pull in revenues of $3.8 billion.

While Samsung is flying high, Micron (Crucial's parent company) showed the weakest growth among the top-five DRAM suppliers in the second quarter. Micron's revenues rose by 4.1 percent to $1.43 billion, which iSuppli blames on manufacturing challenges at the company's Inotera facility.

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