Why Micron’s DRAM segment is integral to its business



What is DRAM

DRAM products are high-density, low-cost-per-bit, RAM, (or random access memory) devices that provide high-speed data storage and retrieval. Micron Technology, Inc.’s (MU) standard DRAM products include DDR4, DDR3, and DDR2. These are standardized, high-density, high-volume products for use in computers and servers as main memory systems. They are preferred products because they offer high speed and high bandwidth at a comparatively low cost. DDR3 and DDR2 products contributed 31% and 7% towards total revenues in 2013.


Specialty DRAM

Micron’s DRAM specialty memory products include the following:

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  • LPDRAM, or low power DRAM – These DRAM products consume less power. For this reason, they are used in laptops, tablets, and other consumer devices.
  • RLDRAM, or reduced latency DRAM – These products are used in low-profile memory modules.
  • PSRAM, or pseudo-static DRAM – These products are used in mobile devices.

Micron’s specialty DRAM products cater to networking devices, servers, consumer electronics, communications equipment, computer peripherals, and computer memory up-gradation space. Specialty DRAM products contributed 10% towards the company’s overall revenues in 2013.

DRAM revenues are rising with each fiscal quarter

In 4Q2014, DRAM contributed 68% to Micron’s overall revenues. As the chart above shows, DRAM’s contribution to overall revenues is increasing on a year-over-year basis. Its contribution towards FY14 revenues had not been reported at the time of publication.

Hybrid memory cube: A collaborative effort

HMC, or hybrid memory cube, is a new memory architecture that enables ultra-high system performance with significantly lower-cost per bit. Its development was led by eight of the industry’s leading companies—Altera, ARM, International Business Machines Corp. (IBM), SK Hynix, Micron, Open-Silicon, Samsung Electronics Co Ltd (SSNLF), and Xilinx. Micron began testing HMC in September 2013.

To learn more about this topic, read Market Realist’s, Micron’s key cloud innovations include its hybrid memory cube.

End markets and customers

Mobile, computing and PC, and server markets contributed 30%, 40%, and 15%, respectively, towards DRAM business in FY14. Its key customers include Intel Corporation (INTC) and Hewlett-Packard Company (HPQ). Each of these contributed 10% towards Micron’s overall revenues.


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