Despite the recent decline in the demand of DRAM, SK Hynix says it will continue to focus on its key technology competitiveness while developing next-generation technology to prepare for the upturn to come in the long term.
In SK hynix’s previous earnings reports in 2019, Vice President Jin-suk Cha said: “SK hynix plans to adjust production and investment operations to effectively cope with the market environment and external variables. In the midst of rapidly changing market conditions, we will focus on profit-oriented product mix operation and continuous product and technology development to quickly overcome the memory downturn.”
As the rate of high-density SSD adoption in PCs is rising, the South Korean company has seen that the density of the NAND is also increasing, particularly in the mobile market. The demand for mobile-oriented NAND is expected to increase as well since the trend of flagship smartphones, such as multiple camera adoption, would require more capacity.
In the mobile market, NAND capacity differentiation continues to expand customer sales. As a result, high-capacity 3D NAND adoption rates are expected to continue to rise on smartphones globally. SK hynix is operating mainly on 72-layer 3D NAND and plans to gradually increase the portion of 96-layer in the second half of this year, focusing on sales of high-end smartphone and PCle SSD products.
The recent downturn in DRAM demand has led to conservative purchasing behavior by some customers. SK hynix says that it is countering these uncertainties by responding mainly with mobile and PC DRAMs, where demand growth is relatively high, and by using technology migration without adding wafer capacity.
Teh chip maker plans to gradually reduce the production of 2Znm DRAM and expand the share of 1Xnm and 1Ynm instead, which reached mid-40% in Q2. SK hynix started selling 1Ynm computing products, and will increase the proportion of 1Ynm DRAM to early 10% by the end of this year. In addition, the company intends to actively respond to the LPDDR5 and HBM2E DRAM markets, which are expected to grow considerably next year.
Earlier this year, SK hynix announced its HBM2E-based DRAM to satisfy the demand for increased performance, bringing the world’s fastest 460GB per second data processing speed. The product will be aimed at high-end machine learning, supercomputers and 5G network applications.
"SK hynix will continue to focus on our key technology competitiveness while developing next-generation technology to prepare for the upturn to come in the long term," the company says.