Shares of both Micron Technology Inc. (NASDAQ/MU) and Intel Corporation (NASDAQ/INTC) jumped on Tuesday July 28th after the companies announced a breakthrough innovation on the memory chips underlying computers, smartphones, and tablets. (Source: The Wall Street Journal, July 28, 2015.)
The new chips are reportedly 1,000 times faster than ones used in most mobile devices, and can store ten times more data than the conventional memory chips used in most electronic hardware.
“For decades, the industry has searched for ways to reduce the lag time between the processor and data to allow much faster analysis,” said Rob Crooke, senior vice president and general manager of Intel’s Non-Volatile Memory Solutions Group. (Source: Intel – Newsroom, July 28, 2015.)
“This new class of non-volatile memory achieves this goal and brings game-changing performance to memory and storage solutions.”
Micron’s stock price rose by nine percent on Tuesday and gained another 2.5% on Wednesday as investors digested the implications of faster memory speeds. Consumer electronics process information at speeds measured in gigabytes, which are adequate for personal use. But many systems require greater processing power to decipher the nearly five billion terabytes (1,000 gigabytes) of digital data being produced annually. Micron’s innovation could yield fruitful analysis in nanoseconds.
For instance, the chips could provide retailers with enough processing power to sort fraudulent activities from all incoming transactions. Intel argues the added speed could have profound impacts on an even wider range of fields, including medicine.
“Healthcare researchers could process and analyze larger data sets in real time, accelerating complex tasks such as genetic analysis and disease tracking.”