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eMMC Holds Its Personal Towards UFS


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The embedded MultiMediaCard (eMMC) customary is not being up to date. However that’s not retaining some distributors from innovating across the NAND flash storage machine to be used circumstances the place it’s nonetheless the most suitable choice.

Whereas Common Flash Storage (UFS) was trumpeted as extensively changing eMMC when it debuted, it’s overkill for some purposes. In an interview with EE Instances, Eric Spanneut, vp of flash world product administration for Western Digital’s flash enterprise unit, mentioned eMMC works finest for mid–vary cellular units and skinny–and–gentle entry–stage compute units, in addition to wide selection of rising purposes. “eMMC is right here to remain for a really very long time,” he mentioned.

With little fanfare, the corporate lately launched its iNAND EM141 Embedded Flash Gadget, designed for purposes that require excessive efficiency, dependable information storage, a small type issue, and environment friendly energy consumption.

Western Digital’s new eMMC iNAND EM141.  (Supply: Western Digital)

Among the many design options are enhanced endurance, superior utilization diagnostics with higher failure evaluation, and Encrypted Area Firmware Improve. The brand new eMMC machine employs Western Digital’s 96–layer 3D NAND know-how and fourth–era SmartSLC structure. The 96–layer 3D NAND is offered in capacities starting from 32GB to 256GB.

There are 4 distinct market segments the place eMMC has traction, mentioned Spanneut, together with the Chromebook market. “At capacities of 32 and 64 gigabytes, eMMC remains to be a very fashionable interface in that house.”

Equally, smartphones and tablets are nonetheless well-liked locations for eMMC, particularly 4G telephones, though the upper–finish units will go for UFS. “You may not have a excessive–finish smartphone with eMMC,” he mentioned. “The efficiency wouldn’t be adequate.”

eMMC continues to be extensively utilized in automotive purposes corresponding to telematics, infotainment, and superior driver help techniques, and can proceed to be for a while. “Within the automotive house, we’re going to see a combination over time between eMMC, UFS, and SSDs. It would rely upon the kind of utility,” Spanneut mentioned. “It’s good to present merchandise with a whole lot of longevity. It takes time for the automotive house to maneuver from one know-how to a different. eMMC is confirmed.”

The fourth market phase for eMMC is considerably nebulous – the web of issues (IoT). Spanneut mentioned IoT–related units embody good audio system and TV, set prime bins, level–of–sale units, drones, and a variety of wearables. “The IoT house is extraordinarily fragmented and numerous, and a whole lot of the IoT sub-verticals will proceed to make use of eMMC for a very long time.”

The know-how’s longevity even with newer options obtainable will be credited to its extraordinarily confirmed and mature interface, he mentioned, which haven’t been up to date within the final 5 years. Within the embedded house, eMMC can finest deal with the decrease capability purposes with a decrease energy profile in contrast with UFS.

Though there’s been no updates to the usual in a while, Spanneut mentioned, there’s nonetheless alternatives for Western Digital to innovate round eMMC. “We’ve got launched just a few superior options for eMMC based mostly in the marketplace necessities.” Amongst them are good partitioning that segments the machine into two areas, one in all which is optimized for reliability.

He mentioned Western Digital’s portfolio of eMMC is personalized for the 4 key verticals and the corporate is dedicated to refreshing its portfolio often. “We predict eMMC may have a protracted life.”

— Gary Hilson is a basic contributing editor with a concentrate on reminiscence and flash applied sciences for EE Instances.

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