NAND flash is a type of non-volatile storage technology that does not necessitate power to retain data. For example, a mobile phone has NAND flash, though it is often called a memory chip, whereas data files like photos, videos, and music are stored on a microSD card. In this blog, we will provide a brief overview of these small-scale devices that can store immense amounts of information, allowing you to better understand the magnitude of their capabilities.
can be found in countless applications including modern smartphones, televisions, computers, and tablets. Other uses include traffic lights, digital advertising panels, and passenger announcement systems and displays. As such, they are available in different grades, those being industrial and consumer variations. It is important to note that there are many differences between an industrial- and consumer-grade NAND, each varying in reliability, endurance, compliance, and total cost of ownership (TCO).
For devices equipped with NAND flash, these components offer mechanical shock resistance, increased durability, and can handle high pressures and temperatures. Unlike a hard disk drive
, NAND flash does not have any moving parts, making them a suitable option for systems that vibrate and shake. Furthermore, NAND flash also offers fast read access times which is critical when processing a lot of data.
Data that is stored on NAND flash is represented by electrical charges that are deposited in each NAND cell. There are two cell types, those of which are Single-Level Cell (SLC) and Multi-Level Cell (MLC) NANDs. The major difference between each level is how many bits each NAND cell can store at one time. While a SLC NAND can only store 1 bit of data per cell, a 2-bit MLC NAND has the ability to store 2 bits of data per cell.
There is also a 3-bit MLC NAND that stores 3 bits of data per cell, and it is often referred to as either a Triple-Level Cell (TLC) or a Quadruple-Level Cell (QLC). It is important to note that the fewer bits per cell, the smaller the capacity of the NAND. However, data can be written and retrieved faster, and the NAND chip exhibits a higher endurance level. That being said, a SLC NAND is fastest and has the highest endurance, but has lower capacities, ranging up to 64GB.
Though each cell level offers varying advantages, NAND flash has a number of limitations. First, NAND has a limited number of read/write cycles in a specific block. Once a device reaches the user, its first day of operations offers optimal performance. In fact, NAND failure is inevitable once the program erase cycle limit is reached. Another limitation of NAND flash is that individual cells fail and overall performance diminishes over time.
As wear-out is common in many electrical components
, NAND flash is no exception. When the NAND fails, the device is rendered useless, resulting in the loss of data and a reduction in application functionality. The best way to ensure NAND flash is working optimally is to understand your data usage and the limitations of your specific type of NAND. Doing so can protect your data and applications.
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, Sandisk, and more. Initiate the procurement process with a competitive quote and see how ASAP IT Technology can serve as your strategic sourcing partner. For additional questions, call or email us at any time; we are available 24/7x365!