While Samsung might make the Lion's share of memory for our mobile devices, they're not exactly what you would call a "memory specialist", that sort of thing is left to SK Hynix and they're teasing new technology that should enable devices to ship with 4GB of RAM as early as the end of this year. Of course, that's a lofty ambition and the company doesn't hope to mass-produce the chips until then, so memory reaching 4GB or so is likely to be the "big thing" in mobile for 2014.
SK Hynix are able to do this thanks to a new chip, they're currently sampling 20nm 1GB chips that can be stacked easily to form 4GB of LPDDR3. This being "high-density" memory, you can expect speeds of up to 2,133 mbps, which trumps the 1,600 mbps speed inside of the Galaxy S 4. As well as this, there's apparently less power-drain in standby mode and the stacks will be overall thinner, at least compared to LPDDR2.
SK Hynix's statement reads as follows:
"Samples of this new product have been shipped to customers and the company plans to start mass production of it at the end of this year. High density LPDDR3 memory products [with] over 2 GB are expected to be noticeably loaded mainly on to high-end mobile devices from the second half of this year."Advertisement
Personally, I doubt that we'll see such devices in 2013, or at least we can't think of any that will be shipping with such capacities. Samsung won't be releasing a device with 3 or 4GB of RAM, as it would cast doubt over the Galaxy S 4's 2GB. Having said that, the Galaxy Note III would be the perfect candidate for such large amounts of memory. Meanwhile, rumors of Sony releasing devices with crazy amounts of RAM have been circling for a long time now and this could well be the last piece in the puzzle.
Regardless, the mobile space is definitely heating up, with new core designs coming from ARM, there's soon going to be a whole raft of CPUs that can address more than 4GB of RAM. Those days are perhaps a little way off however, as 4GB sounds more than enough for today's mobile needs. What do you think – do you need more memory in your smartphone?