Samsung Ushers Consumers into Advanced Personal Computing Through SSDs with Major Performance Boosts and High Density

on September 25, 2015
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Samsung Electronics unveiled big advancements in consumer solid state drives (SSD) on Tuesday, Sept. 22, led by the groundbreaking 950 PRO SSD at the 4th Samsung SSD Global Summit in Seoul.


Under the theme of “Marching Into the Next Era”, Samsung’s memory experts emphasized how SSD performance is at a “turning point,” both in terms of its technical possibilities and consumer adoption.


Un-Soo Kim, Senior Vice President of Brand Product Marketing Team of Memory Business, emphasized Samsung’s focus remains on consumers in his welcoming speech. “Consumers want capacity, performance and value. Consumers stand at center of everything we do.”


Doh Young Jeong, manager of Brand Product Marketing Team, said that “For the first time, customer surveys indicate the biggest issue with SSDs is no longer cost, but capacity and performance.” Global NAND flash memory market will reach up to 84 billion GB for this year — which translates to more than 336 million 256GB drives —and will go up to 253 billion GB by 2020, signaling growing presence of memory storage and SSDs in our daily life.


In preparation for these massive market demand jumps, Samsung’s memory technology is opening the door for consumers and businesses to experience enterprise quality memory storage performance. With Samsung’s cutting-edge stackable and scalable V-NAND technology we can likely expect consumer-ready several-terabyte (TB) SSDs are just around the corner.


The big emphasis for the summit was on the 950 PRO. The 950 PRO SSD promises unprecedented increased in speed and efficiency thanks to its Non-Volatile Memory Express (NVMe) protocol and Peripheral Component Interconnect Express (PCIe) 3.0 interface. It’s also the first branded SSD from Samsung to combine NVMe and V-NAND technology.



The drive comes in a compact M.2 2280 form factor, making it ideal for laptops and mobile platforms that support the M.2 PCIe slot.




“Only recent have the pieces come together for the consumer market,” said Jeong, calling the new developments in BIOS, CPU and OS support a “break from the past.”


While speeds and capabilities of computing environments and communication technologies continue to grow exponentially—wireless communication, mobile networks, external connectors, etc.—memory devices based on SATA is becoming a bottleneck factor, with legacy technology and protocols limiting progress.


The 950 PRO SSD now is capable of bypassing the legacy technologies and promises significant speed, performance and reliability improvements. Until the 950 PRO, SSDs relied on using Serial Advanced Technology Attachment (SATA) interfaces and Advanced Host Controller Interface (AHCI) protocol. But the 950 PRO offers up to four times faster sequential read/write speeds and much higher random IOPS (input/output operations per second) than even the latest SATA SSDs.


The 950 PRO currently uses 2nd generation V-NAND and is available in 256GB and 512 GB, with planned expansion to 1TB early next year. The 512GB version of the 950 PRO can perform sequential read and write speeds of up to 2,500 MB/s and 1,500 MB/s respectively, and has random read performance up to 300,000 IOPS.


Ryan Smith, Director of NAND Product Marketing Group at Samsung Semiconductor Inc., then took to the stage to talk about how these technological leaps will affect the big picture in our lives. Combined with faster connectors, these new SSDs can reduce transferring 10GB of data on a SATA based hard disk drive from 6-10 minutes to just 10 seconds on a 950 PRO, or 16GB of photos from 177 seconds on a hard disk drive to just 10 seconds.


Faster also means more battery life, Smith noted, explaining how an NVMe SSD is able to finish the same amount of work much quicker and then saves its power when in idle mode, therefore consuming approximately 95 percent less power.


Smith also accentuated how these advancements will soon mean really big changes in datacenters and in enterprise, as well as with the Internet of Things. He explained how NVMe SSD solutions are becoming even more essential as datacenters deal with 4K video streaming and optimization using NVMe RAIDs. He also talked about several non-traditional uses for SSDs, such as virtual reality, crime prevention, remote surgery and traffic management. “SATA’s been holding us back,” he said. Better, faster, more efficient memory means a huge increase in the amount of data that can be stored and analyzed. Thanks to PCIe and NVMe, he said “Think about what industries we’re going to disrupt next.”

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