DDR3 Supply to Cease by SK Hynix and Samsung, Driving Price Surge

May 13, 2024 – According to a report by the Economic Daily News, SK Hynix and Samsung Electronics will discontinue supplying DDR3 memory to the market from the second half of this year. This decision has driven up the prices of DDR3 DRAM recently, with the maximum increase reaching 20%.

DDR3 has now become a niche product, but it is still used in areas such as set-top boxes, Wi-Fi routers, switches, and displays.

The report states that Samsung Electronics has notified its customers of the cessation of DDR3 supply by the end of this quarter, while SK Hynix completed the capacity conversion of its Wuxi wafer fabrication plant at the end of last year and has gradually phased out DDR3 production.

Although Micron, another major DRAM manufacturer, has not yet discontinued DDR3 memory production, it has significantly reduced its supply.

The three mainstream memory companies have abandoned the DDR3 memory market to varying degrees, mainly due to the booming demand for HBM3 and standard DDR5, which leaves them with little time to focus on the relatively mature DDR3 products.

HBM, known as “AI memory”, is self-evident. In terms of standard DDR5 memory, Intel and AMD will launch a new generation of mainstream desktop platforms in the second half of the year, all of which only support DDR5, driving a new wave of demand.

Meanwhile, on the server side, Intel’s Xeon 6 series processors are imminent, and AMD’s Zen5 architecture EPYC Turin processors are also expected to be released this year, which will encourage server manufacturers to increase DDR5 procurement.

Compared to DDR3, HBM and DDR5 memories have advantages in terms of unit price and profitability, so it is not surprising that the three major memory manufacturers are shifting their workforce, equipment, and production capacity out of the DDR3 field.

In addition to these three giants, Nanya Technology has also shifted its production capacity to DDR4/5 memory, only accepting customer OEM orders for DDR3.

Currently, companies that still consider DDR3 memory as an important business include GigaDevice and Winbond Electronics.

The report predicts that DDR3 memory prices will continue to rise in the second half of the year, and the increase is expected to expand further.

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