Western Digital delivers mobile data with new line of 3D NAND iNAND embedded flash drives



Western Digital introduced on Monday a new portfolio of advanced iNAND embedded flash drives (EFDs) to empower smartphone users to unlock the full potential of data-driven applications and experiences. Leveraging Western Digital’s 64-layer 3D NAND technology and advanced UFS and e.MMC interface technologies, the intelligent, new iNAND 8521 and iNAND 7550 EFDs deliver data performance and high storage capacity.

When designed into smartphones and thin, lightweight computing devices, they accelerate the possibilities of a range of demanding data-centric applications, including augmented reality (AR), high resolution video capture and social media experiences, as well as emerging artificial intelligence (AI) and Internet of Things (IoT) experiences at the “edge.”

Designed for data-intensive users, the iNAND 8521 EFD utilizes the UFS 2.1 interface and Western Digital’s new fifth-generation SmartSLC technology to deliver up to double the sequential write speed1, and up to 10 times the random write speed compared with the company’s previous iNAND mobile solution for smartphones, the iNAND 7232 EFD.

Quickly and intelligently responding to users’ application performance needs, it enables rapid virtual reality game play and fast downloading of HD movies. The exceptional data transfer speed of the iNAND 8521 EFD also enables mobile users to take advantage of the latest Wi-Fi speeds and network enhancements as service providers transition to 5G.

The iNAND 7550 EFD enables mobile manufacturers to create cost-effective smartphones and computing devices that feature ample storage to meet the needs of increasing consumer content while providing fast and engaging application experiences.

Built on the e.MMC 5.1 specification, it offers high performing iNAND EFD based on the widely used e.MMC interfaces to date, and delivers sequential write performance of up 260 MB/s and random read/write performance of 20K IOPS and 15K IOPS respectively. This enables the iNAND 7550 to enhance boot-up and application launch times.

The volume, velocity, variety and value of data continues to exponentially grow and evolve across big data, fast data and personal data. Many consumers around the world will experience this confluence of data on their smartphone.

“By end of 2018, we estimate that average storage capacity will climb to over 60 gigabytes per smartphone globally to support the growing proportion of rich multimedia content and data-driven experiences from artificial intelligence to augmented reality on the devices,” said Neil Shah, research director of devices and ecosystems at Counterpoint Research. “This warrants a move to advanced 3D NAND embedded flash storage solutions, which will drive these richer experiences even further.”

“In addition to 360 video and multi-lens cameras, the emergence of AI in mobile apps for more immersive experiences will propel the data-centric nature of smartphones to new levels,” said Christopher Bergey, vice president of embedded and integrated solutions at Western Digital. “Our innovative new iNAND solutions create environments for data across today’s most intensive mobile applications and experiences to thrive. We brought together Western Digital’s industry-leading X3 3D NAND technology and new enhancements to our unique application-aware SmartSLC technologies to provide customers with our most intelligent and highest performance iNAND devices to date. These new additions to our iNAND portfolio position us well to continue addressing the rising mobile data demands of the dynamic global mobile market.”

Marketed under the SanDisk brand, the iNAND 8521 and iNAND 7550 EFDs are the latest additions to the iNAND family, which has been trusted by various smartphone and tablet manufacturers. Western Digital is currently sampling iNAND 8521 and iNAND 7550 storage solutions to OEMs in capacities up to 256GB.

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