Last week, Intel spoke about its plans for the development of 3D NAND memory, from which it became clear that this manufacturer relies on the floating shutter technology, with the help of which it plans to master the release of 144-layer QLC memory next year. It is generally accepted that until recently, Micron, which acted as a partner of Intel, prefers the technology of manufacturing memory cells with a charge trap, but the recently published quarterly report of Micron Technology made it possible to verify that this is not entirely true.
Image Source: Micron Technology
At the very least, the Micron management considered it necessary to state that 3D NAND memory samples with a replacement shutter have already been received, and next year this technology will be used to produce 128-layer memory. True, the volume of output will not be large, and therefore the 96-layer memory throughout 2020 will remain the main "workhorse", as the general director Sanjay Mehrotra put it.
The introduction of replacement shutter technology will be implemented in a limited range of products, and the second generation of this technology, which Micron expects to master only in calendar year 2021, will go into the series. Given that Intel will release 144-layer memory with a floating shutter, there is no longer any doubt about sharing the strategy of the former partners. Switching to a replacement shutter on a mass-production scale will allow Micron to significantly reduce the cost of 3D NAND memory, as company management expects.