|AMD-Fujitsu Spansion (ex-FASL) News - 11/02/04|
|Spansion Enters Fast-Growing Serial Flash Memory Market
MirrorBit technology enables new product family with SPI interface to deliver best-in-class solutions from AMD and Fujitsu
Spansion LLC, the Flash memory subsidiary of AMD and Fujitsu, today announced an entirely new Flash memory family designed to reduce costs and dramatically simplify system design of Flash-enabled consumer electronics, PC peripherals, and in-cabin automotive electronics. The new Spansion FL Flash memory family enables these improvements by using the Serial Peripheral Interface (SPI), an emerging serial communication standard with rapid projected Flash memory market growth from nearly $500 million in 2005 to more than $1 billion in 2007 . The family leverages the company’s proprietary MirrorBit technology and ranges from 1 to 16 megabits (Mb) today, with devices up to 64Mb planned for mid-2005.
“Spansion’s entry into the SPI market provides the critical mass needed to make the interface attractive to system designers who are eager for cost-reduced, low-density Flash-based applications,” said Alan Niebel, CEO of Web-Feet Research. “Spansion is using its industry leadership to provide a trusted, long-term source for customers who will benefit from using serial Flash memory. To support higher density SPI applications, Spansion’s product density roadmap is correctly timed to meet market demands.”
Spansion FL Flash memory products will help designers to develop the next generation of smaller, lower-cost consumer and automotive electronics including DSL and cable modems, DVD/CD players and recorders, optical and hard disk drives, LCD monitors, digital TVs, PC BIOS and printers. Users of these products can enjoy faster boot times enabled by Spansion’s best-in-class operating frequencies up to 50 MHz. To shrink product form factors, SPI enables advanced packaging options that require 80 percent less board space and 75 percent fewer electronic connections than traditional Flash devices in standard TSOP packages.
Serial Flash memory communicates with processors in a different way than traditional parallel Flash memory. Traditional Flash memory inputs or outputs 8, 16, or 32 bits of data simultaneously, but serial Flash memory inputs and outputs only one data bit (a ‘1’ or a ‘0’) at a time. As a result, single-bit input and output simplifies system design and can even lower the cost and complexity of other components. That is why Spansion is actively collaborating with industry-leading chipset vendors, including Conexant and Genesis Microchip, to implement the SPI interface in microprocessors and ASICs.
“Genesis Microchip is very pleased that a leader like Spansion is adding SPI products to its portfolio,” said Anders Frisk, executive vice president of Genesis Microchip, the world’s leading supplier of LCD monitor controllers. “SPI is a promising way for many of our customers to lower the cost and reduce the complexity of system design, and we are working with Spansion to bring those benefits to the global LCD monitor market.”
To further establish MirrorBit technology as an industry standard, Spansion and Saifun Semiconductors (Netanya, Israel) have joined forces to develop the Spansion FL family. Based on a joint collaboration and distribution agreement, Spansion will use its proprietary MirrorBit technology to manufacture product designs created by Saifun. The new product family furthers Spansion’s strategy to enter new markets using the low-cost and other benefits of MirrorBit technology.
“The Spansion FL family and SPI interface are proof that future Flash memory innovations will require Flash vendors to expand their focus beyond the memory itself to the customer’s entire system,” said Sylvia Summers, senior vice president and general manager of Spansion’s Embedded Business Unit. “SPI affects more than just the Flash memory. It enables simpler controllers, ASICs and circuit boards, which combined can lower system costs faster than a memory-only solution. The wide range of SPI products announced today shows our strong commitment to serial Flash memory, and Saifun’s participation in product design increases the industry-wide momentum surrounding MirrorBit technology. Once again, we’ve strengthened our commitment to offering customers the broadest portfolio of relevant products combined with extensive system-level design support.”
For low-density designs, 1 and 2Mb products are currently available in production volumes. Customers are actively sampling 4Mb devices and beginning to sample 16Mb products, and Spansion plans to extend the family to 8, 32 and 64Mb densities in 2005. As applications continue to evolve and memory requirements increase, MirrorBit technology’s proven scalability will enable additional, higher-density solutions.
FL-family products at 1, 2, 4 and 16Mb densities are priced at $0.55, $0.65, $0.85 and $1.45 each in quantities of 10,000. Spansion products are available worldwide from AMD and Futjisu.
This release contains forward-looking statements, which are made pursuant to the safe harbor provisions of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Investors are cautioned that forward-looking statements in this release involve risks and uncertainty that could cause actual results to differ materially from current expectations. Risks include that AMD will not be able to meet demand for its Flash memory products; that the company may not achieve its current product and technology introduction schedules. We urge investors to review in detail the risks and uncertainties in the company's Securities and Exchange Commission filings, including but not limited to the Annual Report on Form 10-K for the year ended December 28, 2003.
About Spansion LLC
Spansion, the Flash memory subsidiary of AMD (NYSE:AMD) and Fujitsu (TSE:6702), is the world’s leading manufacturer of NOR Flash memory. Spansion Flash memory is used by leaders in the wireless, cellular, automotive, networking, telecommunications and consumer electronics markets. Spansion offers the industry’s broadest Flash memory portfolio, including 5-, 3-, and 1.8-volt products from 1 to 512 Mbits in single-die and multi-chip product (MCP) configurations. Spansion engineering innovations, such as the award-winning MirrorBit™ technology and simultaneous read-write (SRW) architecture, continue to advance the state of the art.
To address global consumer desire for Flash-enabled products, Spansion operates four dedicated commercial Flash fabs and four dedicated Flash assembly sites around the world. All Spansion production fabs are certified to the demanding ISO/TS16949 and ISO9001:2000 quality standards and the ISO14001 environmental standard. Spansion operates a world-class development fab to accelerate the introduction of next-generation technologies.
Spansion, the Spansion logo, MirrorBit, and combinations thereof are trademarks of Spansion LLC. Other names are for informational purposes only and may be trademarks of their respective owners.
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|The result of a uniquely structured international joint venture known as Fujitsu AMD Semiconductor Limited (Spansion), the current facilities in Aizu-Wakamatsu are dedicated to volume production of Flash memory devices, and combined are capable of processing more than 20,000 eight-inch wafers per week utilizing the most advanced processes.
The first Spansion facility (JV1) commenced volume production of 4- and 16-megabit Flash memory chips on 0.5-micron technology in the fourth quarter of 1994. Since then, the facility has migrated to 0.32 and 0.23-micron technology. The JV1 facility includes 65,950 square feet of Class 1 clean room space housed in a 276,000 square-foot building.
Groundbreaking for the second joint-venture facility (JV2) occurred in March of 1996, and first shipments began in the fourth quarter of 1997. The 300,300 square-foot facility includes approximately 89,700 square feet of Class 1 clean room space, and uses an advanced 0.23-micron process technology.
In July of 2000, Spansion broke ground for its third Flash memory fab in Aizu-Wakamatsu. FASL Fab JV3 is now producing advanced Flash memory devices on 0.17 micron technology. This $1.5 billion facility encompasses 110,000 square feet of clean room space. JV3 encompasses 459,000 total square feet, including a shell for future expansion that can accommodate 12 inch (300mm) wafer production.
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