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Thursday, October 05, 2017
Micron to Bring GDDR6N Memory to Networking Devices

Micron brings the GDDR memory to applications beyond graphics, saying that that GDDR6N, a high-performance GDDR technology for networking solutions, brings significant advantages in terms of bandwidth, power and scalability.

Announced this week at the Linley Processor Conference, Micron's new GDDR6N technology follows Micron's automotive announcement at Mobile World Congress Americas a few weeks ago, regarding the new high-bandwidth GDDR6 memory solutions for the automotive market.

Why Graphics Memory for Networking? Micron says that GDDR technologies have the same high density with the densest DDR4 memory. Today, Micron graphics memory devices are available in densities up to 8Gb, soon to be available in 16Gb. In addition, GDDR devices are driving and exponential increase in bandwidth per packaged device. While a maximum interface speed of 8 Gb/s can be achieved with GDDR5, next-generation GDDR6 devices will blow past this limitation, doubling the interface speed to 16 Gb/s and doubling the number of channels. This new dual-channel architecture enables a massive increase in performance while still providing backward compatibility to GDDR5.

With DDR4 today topping out at 3.2 Gb/s, GDDR5 at up to 8Gb/s and GDDR6 targeted at as much as 16 Gb/s, GDDR devices will provide more than 10X the bandwidth of today's leading-edge DDR4.

In addition, when considering overall total cost of ownership (TCO), Micron says that GDDR6 not only reduces design complexity by 80%, it reduces memory footprint by 82% and improves energy efficiency by 44%.

Finally in terms of energy efficiency, while GDDR5 offered best-in-class power efficiency when it was introduced, the latest GDDR6 technology not only delivers higher system performance but does it even more efficiently than its GDDR5 predecessor, Micron claims.

GDDR6 adds a new ultra-high-speed mode and bandwidth increase, while leveraging a familiar controller design. The main difference between GDDR6 and GDDR5 is related to package and pinouts - so while the transition is not quite a drop-in replacement, GDDR6 follows the same design practice as GDDR5.

Micron GDDR5N and GDDR6N are JEDEC-compliant versions of GDDR5 and GDDR6, specifically designed and tested for the quality, reliability and availability demands of networking- and enterprise-class systems.

Micron's GDDR5N devices are available today, with GDDR6N devices coming soon.

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