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keyword:Avril Wu138 result(s)

Press Releases
Persistent Shortage Results in Near 7% MoM Increase in Average Contract Price of Specialty DDR3 4Gb Chips in February, Says TrendForce

2021/03/09

Semiconductors

As the three dominant DRAM suppliers (Samsung, SK Hynix, and Micron) are currently experiencing a shortage in their production capacities, the corresponding shortage situation in the DRAM market has yet to be resolved, according to TrendForce’s latest investigations Taking advantage of the fact that the whole DRAM market has entered a period of cyclical upturn in 1Q21, DRAM suppliers have significantly raised quotes for specialty DRAM products This extraordinary development has led to price hikes that are almost double digits for some specialty DRAM chips Furthermore, the magnitude of the price hike especially widens for products belonging to the lower part of the density range and the more niche applications Looking at MoM changes in contract prices of specialty DRAM products for February, DDR2 and DDR3 chips saw the largest price hikes Prices of DDR4 chips also went up due to the influence of the rising quotes for DDR3 chips The average contract price of DDR3 4Gb chips, which are still mainstream for specialty applications, jumped 68% MoM As for DDR3 2Gb chips that are primarily promoted by Taiwan-based suppliers, TrendForce indicates that there is not enough supply even as quotes are being offered With this situation becoming the norm, the price range (ie, the difference between the high and low prices) has also expanded dramatically The average contract price of DDR3 2Gb chips rose by nearly 9% MoM in February Samsung significantly raised quotes for DDR4 4Gb chips in response to the sharp upswing in prices of DDR3 chips The low and average prices of DDR4 4Gb chips for specialty applications both climbed around 6% MoM The average price of DDR4 8Gb chips went up by around 4% MoM as the price trend of this product aligns with the general price trends of mainstream PC DRAM and server DRAM products However, it should be pointed out that the hikes in contract prices of specialty DRAM chips were mainly the result of the adjustments made to monthly contract deals and thus reflected the market situation of February By contrast, prices held steady for quarterly lock-in deals with tier-1 clients While the three dominant DRAM suppliers have been slowing down their DDR3 manufacturing, Taiwanese suppliers are constantly adjusting their capacity allocation to maximize profits With demand getting hotter in the specialty DRAM market, DDR3 products are starting to surpass DDR4 products and logic ICs in profit margin Consequently, DRAM suppliers are also changing their strategies Looking at South Korean suppliers, Samsung will continue shifting the wafer production capacity of Line 13 to CMOS image sensors over the long term However, this reassignment has now been scaled down for this year due to the recent surge in specialty DRAM prices Likewise, SK Hynix will keep the DRAM production capacity of its older fab M10 relatively constant through 2021 after reducing it in 2020 As for Micron, it has raised the yield rates of the 1Z-nm and 1-alpha processes, so the output shares of products based on these more advanced technologies will gradually expand Since the available fab space in Taiwan is limited, Micron will relocate the 20nm and more mature processes to Fab 6 in the US In sum, the output of DDR3 products from the three dominant suppliers will continue to shrink, but the pace of the reduction is now slower than originally expected Regarding Taiwan-based suppliers, Nanya has shifted some 20nm and 30nm production capacity from DDR4 products back to DDR3 products Winbond has been focusing on Flash products in the recent years, and its DRAM production capacity will remain fairly limited until the completion of its new fab in Kaohsiung Nevertheless, Winbond is concentrating its DRAM production efforts on low-density DDR2 and DDR3 products (ie, 1Gb and 2Gb chips) It actually has the advantage of being able to raise prices as its market share for low-density products is fairly large As for PSMC, it has been focusing on foundry manufacturing of logic ICs for a while However, with prices now rising for foundry manufacturing of DDR3 products, PSMC now wants to shift some wafer production capacity back to DRAM Going forward, the three Taiwan-based suppliers will keep adjusting their capacity allocation strategies in accordance with changes in the profit margins of different products Nevertheless, even as suppliers are now changing their product mixes to take advantage of the latest market situation, TrendForce projects that specialty DRAM products will be in undersupply at least through 1H21 The magnitudes of price hikes for various types of specialty DRAM products will depend on suppliers’ capacity allocation strategies For more information on reports and market data from TrendForce’s Department of Semiconductor Research, please click here, or email Ms Latte Chung from the Sales Department at lattechung@trendforcecom

Press Releases
DRAM Revenue for 4Q20 Undergoes Modest 1.1% Increase QoQ in Light of Continued Rising Shipment and Falling Prices, Says TrendForce

2021/03/04

Semiconductors

Global DRAM revenue reached US$1765 billion, a 11% increase YoY, in 4Q20, according to TrendForce’s latest investigations For the most part, this growth took place because Chinese smartphone brands, including Oppo, Vivo, and Xiaomi, expanded their procurement activities for components in order to seize the market shares made available after Huawei was added to the Entity List by the US Department of Commerce These procurement activities in turn provided upward momentum for DRAM suppliers’ bit shipment However, clients in the server segment were still in the middle of inventory adjustments during this period, thereby placing downward pressure on DRAM prices As a result, revenues of most DRAM suppliers, except for Micron, remained somewhat unchanged in 4Q20 compared to 3Q20 Micron underwent a noticeable QoQ decline in 4Q20 (which Micron counts as its fiscal 1Q21), since Micron had fewer work weeks during this period compared to the previous quarter Demand for PC, mobile, graphics, and consumer DRAM remains stable throughout 1Q21 As for clients in the server segment, they have now reinitiated a new round of procurement for server DRAM after adjusting their inventories during the two previous quarters (3Q20 and 4Q20) These aforementioned factors, in addition to Micron’s power outage at the start of December last year, resulted in a price hike across all DRAM product categories in 1Q21 TrendForce expects DRAM bit supply to remain unchanged and prices to enter an upturn compared with 4Q20 However, as 1Q21 is the first quarter of the upturn in the DRAM market, and demand is yet to emerge out of the off-season, any growth in bit shipment and prices is expected to be modest, with only a slight QoQ increase in global DRAM revenue compared to 4Q20 Suppliers’ profits were constrained by persistent declines in DRAM prices in 4Q20 With regards to revenue, the performances of Korean DRAM suppliers and that of Micron once again diverged from each other in 4Q20 This difference can mostly be attributed to the fact that, as previously mentioned, Micron had 13 work weeks in 4Q20 (which it refers to as its fiscal 1Q21) compared to the previous quarter, which contained 14 work weeks and therefore was a higher base for QoQ comparison As such, Micron’s 4Q20 DRAM bit shipment and ASP both fell short of 3Q20 figures Conversely, although Korean suppliers likewise experienced a QoQ decline in DRAM ASP, they were able to increase their bit shipment, indicating that their client demand was recovering during this period Samsung and SK Hynix both increased their bit shipment by a wider margin than previously expected This was enough to offset the downward pressure on revenue caused by the decline in the two companies’ DRAM quotes In 4Q20, Samsung and SK Hynix each recorded a 31% and 56% QoQ increase in revenue, while Micron’s revenue declined by 72% due to the corresponding decline in its quarterly bit shipment Micron’s market share also subsequently fell to 23% in 4Q20 Moving to 1Q21, however, Micron is likely to catch up to its Korean competitors in terms of market share, owing to Micron’s pricing strategies, which are the most aggressive among DRAM suppliers, as well as to a general upturn in DRAM quotes With regards to profits, all suppliers experienced a decline in 4Q20 as a result of the 5-10% QoQ decline in DRAM ASP In particular, Samsung’s operating profit margin fell from 41% in 3Q20 to 36% in 4Q20, while SK Hynix likewise showed a decline from 29% in 3Q20 to 26% in 4Q20 For the September-November fiscal quarter (Micron’s own fiscal 1Q21), Micron posted a similar decline in DRAM ASP compared to that of its Korean competitors, as well as a decline in operating profit margin from 25% in 3Q20 to 21% in 4Q20 Taken as a whole, DRAM suppliers were unable to make up for the drop in DRAM quotes with cost-optimization measures Looking ahead to 1Q21, on the other hand, TrendForce expects DRAM quotes to rebound from rock bottom, in turn generating some upward momentum for suppliers’ profitability to rebound from rock bottom as well These events will officially mark the cyclical upturn in DRAM prices It should also be pointed out that, for instance, leading supplier Samsung still retains at least a 30% profit margin even at the lowest level of quotes, while this figure is closer to 10% for Nanya Tech, which is comparatively smaller in scale as a company These margins suggest that the DRAM industry will be able to maintain its profitability due to its oligopolistic nature, at least prior to the entrance of emergent suppliers from China With regards to Taiwanese suppliers, Nanya Tech also increased its bit shipment while its quotes fell compared to 3Q20, resulting in a slight QoQ decline of 07% in revenue in 4Q20 Along with falling quotes, Nanya Tech’s operating profit margins narrowed from 135% in 3Q20 to 88% in 4Q20 As for Winbond, NOR Flash products accounted for an increasing percentage of its total revenue, mostly at the expense of its NAND Flash business, in 4Q20 However, its DRAM revenue underwent a slight QoQ growth of 08% during this period due to an early upturn of the specialty DRAM market This growth was relatively limited due to Winbond's limited DRAM bit supply rather than low client demand PSMC’s DRAM revenue includes only its in-house PC DRAM products The company’s DRAM revenue declined by about 17% QoQ in 4Q20 because its production capacity for DRAM was crowded out by other logic ICs in relatively high demand, including PMICs (power management IC), driver ICs, and CIS TrendForce indicates that, going forward, the three Taiwanese suppliers are still placing a heavy emphasis on their strongest products while furthering their own respective competitive advantages in the industry For instance, Nanya Tech has been actively developing its 1A/1Bnm process technologies, with the goal of submitting samples to its partners by the end of 2021 Winbond, on the other hand, is continuing to improve the yield rate of its new 25nm DRAM process technology and expand its production capacity to meet the high demand for NOR Flash memories Finally, PSMC will continue to maintain fully loaded wafer capacity for logic ICs, which are products with relatively higher gross margins, given the high demand for such products at the moment For more information on reports and market data from TrendForce’s Department of Semiconductor Research, please click here, or email Ms Latte Chung from the Sales Department at lattechung@trendforcecom

Press Releases
Explosive Growth in Automotive DRAM Demand Projected to Surpass 30% CAGR in Next Three Years, Says TrendForce

2021/02/23

Semiconductors

Driven by such factors as the continued development of autonomous driving technologies and the build-out of 5G infrastructure, the demand for automotive memories will undergo a rapid growth going forward, according to TrendForce’s latest investigations Take Tesla, which is the automotive industry leader in the application of autonomous vehicle technologies, as an example Tesla has adopted GDDR5 DRAM products from the Model S and X onward because it has also adopted Nvidia’s solutions for CPU and GPU The GDDR5 series had the highest bandwidth at the time to complement these processors The DRAM content has therefore reached at least 8GB for vehicles across all model series under Tesla The Model 3 is further equipped with 14GB of DRAM, and the next-generation of Tesla vehicles will have 20GB If content per box is used as a reference for comparison, then Tesla far surpasses manufacturers of PCs and smartphones in DRAM consumption TrendForce forecasts that the average DRAM content of cars will continue to grow in the next three years, with a CAGR of more than 30% for the period Based on the existing vehicle models circulating in the global car market, TrendForce estimates that the average DRAM content of cars will reach around 4GB in 2021 The growth in the average DRAM content of cars is expected to be much higher this year than in the past few years However, car sales are not as great in scale when compared with sales of consumer electronics such as notebook (laptop) computers and smartphones In 2019 before the COVID-19 pandemic, the annual global car sales totaled around 94 million vehicle units Also, cars have less DRAM content compared with servers Looking at the 2019 data, the distribution of the annual global DRAM consumption shows that the automotive memory segment accounted for less than 2% of the total Despite high barrier to entry, memory suppliers have been scrambling for automotive market share due to high profit margins Compared with other application segments, automotive memory has a much higher standard for durability and reliability over the long term The operating lifecycle of a car starts at 10 years, so DRAM suppliers basically have to guarantee that their automotive memory solutions have a product lifecycle of at least 7-10 years in order to satisfy the needs related to vehicle maintenance and replacements of parts From the perspective of suppliers, the selection of process technology for product development and manufacturing is a key decision point when it comes to formulating a strategy for the automotive memory segment Even as suppliers continuously migrate to the more advanced process technology, they have to ensure product longevity and long-term support for their automotive offerings Another issue, which is associated with durability, is operating temperature Given that countries around the world have their own climates and extreme weather events, automotive DRAM products must have a much wider temperature range with a higher threshold and a lower threshold when compared with other categories of DRAM products, in order to ensure that cars do not break down on the road Finally, with density and other specifications being the same, prices of automotive DRAM products are at least 30% higher than prices of conventional commercial DRAM products For the automotive DRAM products that have met some of the most stringent standards set by the industry, their prices can even be several times higher than prices of conventional commercial DRAM products In sum, although automotive DRAM products are more difficult and costly to manufacture than other kinds of DRAM products, their high profit margins and large potential market have been attracting DRAM suppliers to now scramble for a piece of the automotive memory segment Taiwanese manufacturers show great potential as Winbond thrives in automotive OEM market with its comprehensive product portfolio Currently, Micron is the leader in automotive memory products with a market share of nearly 50% The supplier first has the geographical advantage Moreover, its collaborative relationships with tier-1 automotive suppliers based in Europe and the US are longer in duration compared with its competitors Micron also has a more comprehensive product lineup for automotive applications, ranging from traditional solutions (eg, DDR2 to DDR4) to LPDDR solutions (eg, LPDDR2 to LPDDR5) to GDDR6 solutions Additionally, Micron provides automakers with other types of memory technologies such as NAND Flash, NOR Flash, and MCP Apart from the three dominant DRAM manufacturers, Taiwan-based Nanya Tech and Winbond are continuing to release a wide variety of memory products in response to the growing demand of the automotive industry In addition to possessing a comprehensive product mix ranging from traditional DDR solutions (eg, up to DDR4) to low-power solutions (eg, LPSDR to LPDDR4X), Nanya Tech has also adopted the 20nm node for a significant portion of its manufacturing processes, which are relatively stable in terms of yield rate On the whole, automotive applications account for nearly 15% of Nanya Tech’s specialty DRAM revenue, while specialty DRAMs account for more than 60% of the company’s total revenue Winbond, on the other hand, has been cultivating its presence in the automotive market for more than 10 years Although the three dominant DRAM manufacturers are ahead of Winbond in terms of process technologies, Winbond’s extensive product portfolio, which includes specialty DRAM, mobile DRAM, NOR Flash, SLC NAND, and MCP, represents a competitive advantage over the vast majority of other manufacturers Given that the automotive OEM market is both relatively stable and profitable, Winbond has been placing a long-term focus on this market; automotive applications now comprise more than 10% of the company’s total memory revenue, and Winbond’s automotive business will likely continue to expand going forward For more information on reports and market data from TrendForce’s Department of Semiconductor Research, please click here, or email Ms Latte Chung from the Sales Department at lattechung@trendforcecom

Press Releases
DDR5 Era to Officially Begin in 2021, with DRAM Market Currently Transitioning Between Generations, Says TrendForce

2020/11/03

Semiconductors

As the current mainstream solution for PC DRAM and server DRAM, both of which share the same roots in IC design, DDR4 reached a penetration rate of more than 90% in each of the above two categories in 3Q20, according to TrendForce’s latest investigations As well, JEDEC finalized the definition of next-generation DDR5 memory in September 2019 Significant increases in the penetration rate of DDR5 PC DRAM is not expected to take place until 2022 at the earliest Owing to BOM cost limitations, DDR5 integration for both Intel and AMD PC platforms will be delayed to 2022 The majority of PCs are based on the Intel platform, which accounts for more than 70% of total PC shipment As PC consumers are extremely sensitive to device prices, and DDR5 memory will command a premium over DDR4 during the initial stages of release, Intel will not rush to offer DDR5 support on its platforms Although the company’s roadmap had previously suggested that it will offer DDR5 support first with Tiger Lake-H (highest-end configuration only), planned for release in 2021, Intel ultimately decided to push back official DDR5 support potentially to the start of 2022 at the earliest, with its Alder Lake platform instead On the other hand, the second-largest PC platform supplier, AMD, whose CPUs are found in more than 20% of total PC shipment, will similarly offer DDR5 memory support with its 5nm CPUs in 2022 at the earliest Both Intel and AMD are unable to offer DDR5 support until 2022 due to the BOM costs involved, meaning DDR5 memory will remain in the product development and verification phases in 2020 and 2021 Intel and AMD may likely mass produce server platforms supporting DDR5 server DRAM in 2022 As with the PC market, Intel is the dominant platform supplier in the server market, accounting for more than 90% of total server shipment Since this market is less sensitive to manufacturing costs compared to the PC market, Intel will be faster to introduce DDR5-compatible platforms in the server market than in the PC market The company is expected to first bring DDR5-compatible products to the server market with its Eagle Stream platform, expected to enter small-batch production in 2H21 TrendForce expects mass production of Intel platforms supporting DDR5 server DRAM to gradually ramp up in 2022 and replace existing platforms supporting DDR4 DRAM Trailing behind Intel is AMD, with an approximately 10% market share in terms of total server shipment AMD’s upcoming Milan platform will continue to support DDR4 only AMD will unlikely support DDR5 until it releases the Genoa server platform, although this is yet to be confirmed The Genoa platform will enter its testing phase in 2021, with mass production expected to kick off in 2022 Should AMD officially offer DDR5 support with Genoa, that means AMD’s server platforms will not transition into DDR5 support on a large scale until 2023 at the earliest Owing to high-end smartphone chips from Qualcomm and MediaTek, LPDDR5 is expected to overtake DDR5 in penetration rate As the dominant mainstream suppliers of smartphone APs, Qualcomm and MediaTek collectively occupy close to 70% of all smartphone shipments this year Of the two companies, Qualcomm is relatively more committed to LPDDR5 adoption, since it has already incorporated the next-generation memory into its solutions this year Qualcomm released its flagship, LPDDR5-compatible chip Snapdragon 865 in early 2020, while the upcoming 870 series of flagship chips will also support LPDDR5 memory On the other hand, MediaTek’s roadmap of LPDDR5 adoption lags behind Qualcomm, since its high-end 5G chips, including reference Dimensity SoCs, support only LPDDR4 memory at the moment However, MediaTek is projected to release at least two (as yet unnamed) chips that will be the first in its product portfolio to support LPDDR5; these chips are likely to be available in the market in 1H21  The price gap between LPDDR5 and LPDDR4X has been narrowed to under 10%, owing to the strategic marketing efforts of DRAM suppliers This narrowing will contribute to the popularity of the next-generation memory Looking ahead to 2021, as Qualcomm’s 870 series of flagship chips and MediaTek’s next-generation chips will support LPDDR5, along with the fact that LPDDR5 is both faster and more power-efficient than its predecessor, LPDDR5 is expected to reach a penetration rate of 185% It should be pointed out that the future development of LPDDR5 will depend on its price difference from LPDDR4X Once this difference becomes negligible, the penetration rate of LPDDR5, compared to that of DDR5, will be more rapid and noticeable GDDR6 has become the mainstream graphics DRAM solution and standard spec on new graphics cards from Nvidia and AMD Nvidia, the dominant supplier in the GPU industry, accounts for about 75% of all graphics card shipment, and the company’s Turing-based GTX and RTX graphics cards, released in 2018, are equipped with GDDR6 memory in the mid-range and high-end product lines, while all cards in the upgraded GTX and RTX series, dubbed the “Super” series, were equipped with GDDR6 Likewise, GDDR6 is standard spec across all graphics cards with Ampere GPUs, released in 3Q20 The second-largest GPU supplier, AMD, occupies about 25% of graphics card shipment AMD’s Navi GPUs, released in 2019, are all equipped with GDDR6 memory GDDR6 will continue to remain standard spec for AMD’s next-generation Big Navi GPU, announced in 3Q20 Big Navi will enjoy increased GDDR6 content per box (that is, DRAM capacity), thereby quickly raising the penetration rate of GDDR6 memory Graphics cards from Nvidia and AMD account for nearly 70% of all graphics DRAM bit consumption Therefore, given the two companies’ active support for GDDR6, the price differences between GDDR6 and GDDR5 are continuously decreasing (at the moment no more than 10%, for the most part; certain suppliers have even quoted GDDR6 at the same price as GDDR5) Aside from graphics cards, game consoles account for about 30% of graphics DRAM bit consumption Microsoft Xbox Series X and Sony PS5, both set to be released in 4Q20, will be equipped with 16GB of GDDR6 Not only is this double the amount of GDDR5 memory equipped on current-gen consoles, but it also far exceeds the 6 to 8GB equipped on current mainstream graphics cards TrendForce indicates that the dominant platform suppliers of the above product categories have a considerable influence over the penetration and integration of next-generation DRAMs DRAM manufacturers are generally capable of producing DRAM chips or modules within one year from JEDEC’s release of exact specifications for the next-generation DRAM products However, without support from the platform end, the penetration rate growth of next-generation DRAMs will be constrained even if DRAM manufacturers are ready to release their own next-generation DRAM product mixes

Press Releases
Overall Memory ASP Projected to Decline by Nearly 10% Given Persistent Oversupply in 4Q20, Says TrendForce

2020/10/07

Semiconductors

The memory market (including DRAM and NAND Flash) is still in a state of oversupply in 4Q20, according to TrendForce’s latest investigations In light of recent US sanctions against Huawei, other smartphone brands have been actively stocking up on memory products in an effort to capture Huawei’s lost market shares, but this procurement momentum is insufficient to improve the lethargic state of the memory market In addition, as memory demand from the server industry has yet to make a noticeable recovery, overall memory ASP is expected to remain weak in 4Q20 and decrease by about 10% QoQ With regards to DRAM, the market is primarily concerned with the mobile DRAM and server DRAM categories, which account for the majority of DRAM bit consumption In terms of mobile DRAM, the preemptive inventory pull by Huawei has quickly alleviated the three major DRAM suppliers’ pressure to destock their inventories As well, Xiaomi, OPPO, and Vivo are all urgently stocking up on key components, in turn providing some support for mobile DRAM ASP, which is expected to undergo a 0-5% QoQ decline in 4Q20 On the other hand, since most CSPs and enterprise server clients are currently maintaining a relatively high inventory level of server DRAM, server DRAM ASP may potentially drop even further, with a forecasted QoQ decline of about 15% in 4Q20 By the end of this year, prices for mainstream 32GB modules are also projected to close to the previous cyclical downswing’s lowest point All in all, overall DRAM ASP is projected to decline by about 10% in 4Q20 With regards to NAND Flash, although preemptive stock-up demand from branded clients similarly provided some support for NAND Flash ASP, the high level of supply bits and high customer inventory levels at the moment have led to an oversupply situation that is more evident than in the DRAM market Owing to aggressive NAND Flash demand from Chinese smartphone brands, the decline in eMMC and UFS ASP is expected to narrow to a 3-7% QoQ drop in 4Q20 Likewise, the continually rising supply of NAND Flash wafers will likely result in a nearly 20% QoQ decline in wafer ASP As for SSD, owing to weakening demand from server manufacturers, enterprise SSD ASP is expected to drop by 10-15% QoQ Overall NAND Flash ASP is projected to drop by about 10% in 4Q20 Furthermore, the spot market, which is indicative of the overall memory market’s movement as a whole, once again turned sluggish after mid-September Although low priced products comprise a relatively low share of DRAM and NAND Flash spot transactions, transactions for mid-range and high-end memory products have not risen by a noticeable amount, thereby constraining the momentum of the overall memory market Looking ahead to 1Q21, the decline in DRAM ASP is expected to significantly narrow, thanks to increased stock-up demand from purchasers Conversely, the abundance of NAND Flash suppliers and persistently high level of supply bits will likely widen the decline in NAND Flash ASP, resulting in a 15% QoQ decrease in 1Q21

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