Samsung is still the king of NAND memory

Despite keeping its position as top worldwide supplier of NAND flash memory in the first quarter of this year, Korean giant Samsung saw its market share slip.

That’s according to market research company iSuppli, which notes in a report that Toshiba has gained share at it and other players’ expense.

Revenues for NAND flash globally amounted to $4.36 billion in the first calendar quarter, a small increase over revenues in Q4 2009. But the first quarter is a seasonally slow period anyway.

There’s strong demand for electronics and that coupled with economic recovery, means that a “sense of normalcy” has returned for NAND suppliers, said Michael Yang, a senior analyst at the company.

“While demand for traditional NAND strongholds like flash cards and USB drives started to decline toward the end of the quarter, sales are growing at an outsized rate for consumer electronics products and smart phones. The early success of Apple’s iPad also portends strong growth for NAND demand in tablets,”  Yang said.

Toshiba and Micron gained market share during the quarter, partly because they shifted to three bit per cell and the latest geometries. The figures below show percentage of revenues in US dollars for the top seven.

Rank Company
Q4 09 share
Q1 10 share
Change
1 Samsung
39.8%
38.5%
-1.3%
2 Toshiba
31%
33.8%
2.8%
3 Micron
8.9%
9.1%
0.2%
4 Hynix
10.4%
9.1%
-1.4%
5 Intel
6.7%
6.3%
-0.4%
6 Numonyx
3.1%
2.9%
-0.2%
7 PowerChip
NA
0.1%
NA