HP to launch flash and SSD alternatives in 18 months

USB flash drives are hugely popular for storage and solid state drives, while expensive, are starting to show up more and more in desktops and especially in notebooks. But HP has got some plans to offer up some alternatives to those technologies, and fairly soon. ElectronicsWeekly.com reports that during the EF2011 meeting this week, Senior Fellow at HP Stan Williams claimed, "We’re planning to put a replacement chip on the market to go up against flash within a year and a half and we also intend to have an SSD replacement available in a year and a half."

HP's technologies is called the memristor and in basic terms it will offer twice the storage capacity of normal flash memory with much faster performance and lower power consumption. Williams says, "We put the non-volatile memory right on top of the processor chip, and, because you’re not shipping data off-chip, that means we get the equivalent of 20 years of Moore’s Law performance improvement." Samsung is also reportedly working on the same kind of technology.

While HP may want to replace your USB flash drive with its technology there's no word on what the price will be for a memory drive using HP's method. HP also wants its technology to replace that DRAM memory you might have in your PC, but that won't have for at least three or four years. Williams says, "Flash is a done deal; now we’re going after DRAM, and we think we can do two orders of magnitude improvement in terms of switching energy per bit."

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Be sure to get a written guarantee from HP that their new hardware will have drivers when Windows-8 is released. Can you afford to have expensive coasters? I can't.

Technology that would come in 18 months? I hope it's that good, too.

Thinks would be a lot different in that time. They really really need to speed up the delivery, regardless of how game-changing that technology is.

In 18 months, even the current technologies can improve drastically, and thus making HP's tech, just useless when it comes.

greenwizard88 said,
If HP wanted to play like Apple, they should keep this to themselves, and make an HP machine an exclusive machine.

Unlike Apple, HP actually wants to improve the world. Not just make the MAX # of profits.

KingCrimson said,

Unlike Apple, HP actually wants to improve the world. Not just make the MAX # of profits.

All companies want to MAX # of profits. Getting the most profits possible are what funds all the research to better the world.

Beyond Godlike said,
Ive always been tempted by SSD's but i dont like the life and the lack of storage space..if this beats that then huwway

You really need to educate yourself on today's technology.
Current gen SSDs will last much much longer than any mechanical HDD.

Astra.Xtreme said,

You really need to educate yourself on today's technology.
Current gen SSDs will last much much longer than any mechanical HDD.

I have hard drives that are nearly 30 years old that still work perfectly and have their data. When I see an SSD that has been in storage that long power up and still have it's data I'll believe that.

Astra.Xtreme said,

You really need to educate yourself on today's technology.
Current gen SSDs will last much much longer than any mechanical HDD.

And you need to educate yourself. There is no research that is published stating that SSDs last longer than a mechanical hard drive. At best, you could say that the potential for physical problems or wear is much higher on a mechanical drive than on an SSD.

Tom's Hardware just did a piece on SSD reliability and spoke to several large datacenters. Most of these companies have only had SSDs in service for 2 years at most (and those oldest ones are 1st-gen Intel X-25 series drives). The data they provided shows that SSDs - within the first 2 years of service - are roughly 1-2% less likely to fail. There's no age-related failure information available for SSDs.

Also, keep in mind that the vast majority of SSD failures are firmware related. This is still a new technology and its performance and reliability is highly dependent on the firmware, which is still evolving. Hard drives have been around for decades and the firmware problems have long been sorted (barring any flukes).

18months will be too late.

The SSD will keep going, speed increasing, price per GB dropping, by the time HP release their alternative, it will be too late, they're product will most likely not match up to the hype that will be surrounding it etc..

Just call it a day HP!

However on a second thought, competition is good for us as consumers.

booboo said,
18months will be too late.

The SSD will keep going, speed increasing, price per GB dropping, by the time HP release their alternative, it will be too late, they're product will most likely not match up to the hype that will be surrounding it etc..

Just call it a day HP!

However on a second thought, competition is good for us as consumers.

As far as I know, memristors are supposed to last far longer than your beloved ssds current technology.... so, no.

Arceles said,

As far as I know, memristors are supposed to last far longer than your beloved ssds current technology.... so, no.


The SSD could last a users lifetime.. depending on usage of course, much longer than a HDD, where mechanical issues are much more likely to arise.

Still, SSD are very expensive, and if this were to be as cheap (or more or less) than a normal HDD it will be a win. SSDs are great, but I don't see them dropping the price to "budget" anytime in the following year or two.

I dont think you understand what memristors is. This is not only as a replacement for Flash, it is something that will change the entire SemiConductor Industry. DRAM, SRAM,, SSD will be a thing of the past. Of coz it is still going to take years to achieve that. But it is currently one of very very few technology that is capable of doing so.

IICODECll said,
Then they will let it run for 1 and a half months and let it die like webOS.
The term "run" might be overstating it slightly when it comes to webOS.

IICODECll said,
Then they will let it run for 1 and a half months and let it die like webOS.

Memristors? Memristors could be the most important invention for computing since the original transistors. A memristor HDD is basically the same in principle as a stick of RAM, except it doesn't need constant power to hold it's data. memristors used in RAM directly could eliminate the need for hard disks entirely!

IICODECll said,
Then they will let it run for 1 and a half months and let it die like webOS.

wth dude... what's the point of reading about technological advancements if you're already bitching about it's demise!?

Mouettus said,

wth dude... what's the point of reading about technological advancements if you're already bitching about it's demise!?

The idea behind memristor sounds promising. However, my gripe is not with the technology itself, but rather HP as a company in it's current state of leadership.

Look at how long it took to bring the HP Veer, HP TouchPad to the market, and the lack of the HP Pre 3 (if you're lucky, you can get one on eBay). They promised an ecosystem. They did not deliver. HP pulled out before they even got started. With the respect they have shown the Palm Global Business Unit, their potential PC group spin-off... I have serious doubt with HP's ability to follow through with this technology. I *fear* they will release the hardware then pull out without even giving it a chance to grow. Where does that leave all the customers that have vested themselves in the technology?

IICODECll said,

The idea behind memristor sounds promising. However, my gripe is not with the technology itself, but rather HP as a company in it's current state of leadership.

Look at how long it took to bring the HP Veer, HP TouchPad to the market, and the lack of the HP Pre 3 (if you're lucky, you can get one on eBay). They promised an ecosystem. They did not deliver. HP pulled out before they even got started. With the respect they have shown the Palm Global Business Unit, their potential PC group spin-off... I have serious doubt with HP's ability to follow through with this technology. I *fear* they will release the hardware then pull out without even giving it a chance to grow. Where does that leave all the customers that have vested themselves in the technology?

You're talking about two completely different things. Memristor is a technology. The Touchpad is a product and a platform. The difference is that technologies make products possible without necessarily being products themselves. HP wouldn't even necessarily have to sell Memristor drives themselves, instead supplying parts to vendors who themselves build the drives (sort of like how LCD panels are).

This is more true to HP's roots and also means they don't necessarily have to play the consumer marketing game either (when was the last time you saw an SSD marketed like a consumer device?). It's an entirely different game, and your emo little attitude will be better off filed away in the failed technology fanboy corner with all the BeOS/OS2/Symbian children.

Companies are bigger than their products, and your attitude is about as reasonable as hating on a Microsoft virtualization technology advancement just because they cancelled the Courier.

Joshie said,

You're talking about two completely different things. Memristor is a technology. The Touchpad is a product and a platform. The difference is that technologies make products possible without necessarily being products themselves. HP wouldn't even necessarily have to sell Memristor drives themselves, instead supplying parts to vendors who themselves build the drives (sort of like how LCD panels are).

This is more true to HP's roots and also means they don't necessarily have to play the consumer marketing game either (when was the last time you saw an SSD marketed like a consumer device?). It's an entirely different game, and your emo little attitude will be better off filed away in the failed technology fanboy corner with all the BeOS/OS2/Symbian children.

Companies are bigger than their products, and your attitude is about as reasonable as hating on a Microsoft virtualization technology advancement just because they cancelled the Courier.

There is no need to call me emo or a fanboy. Thank you.

Finally a smart investment for HP.. instead of trying to break into new markets keep improving your own.. This would lower the cost (to them) of making pc's especially when they start putting more out with SSDs..