The price of graphic DRAM is expected to rise in 2020 on the back of growing demand for major-scale GDDR6 products, according to market research firm TrendForce.
The firm expected graphic DRAM prices to jump by 5% or more on-quarter during the first three months of 2020. This would be the largest growth clip among all memory chips sectors. As DRAM chips are more susceptible to price changes based on demand, the clip may be even bigger, said TrendForce.
The firm also said in 2020, the graphic DRAM market will swiftly shift to GDDR6 from GDDR5; key graphic card companies such as Nvidia and AMD are all adopting GDDR6 for its latest products. Most of Nvidia’s graphic card shipments are in the RTX segment, which mainly use GDDR6 memory chips.
Sony and Microsoft currently use the GDDR5 for their Playstation 4 and Xbox One, respectively. But they are poised to apply GDDR6 for their next console games, and bigger graphic cards of 16GB capacity, up from the current 8GB.
A shortage of supplies will also push up prices, TrendForce said, pointing out that the top three suppliers – Samsung Electronics, SK hynix and Micron – cut their DRAM production amid the recent memory chip market downturn. Graphic DRAM currently takes up less than 6% of their total DRAM production volume.
Graphic DRAM costs the most per chip compared to other memory chips. Consequently, the three suppliers switched its wafers for graphic DRAM to other more cost-effective products.
Samsung topped the list for graphic DRAM, taking home a 45.7% stake of the global market in the second quarter of this year. TrendForce said Samsung was at the lead in terms for both GDDR6 product design and client satisfaction.
SK hynix followed with a 28.7% stake, followed by Micron with 20.5%. TrendForce said in the arenaofGDDR6 product development, however, Micron was ahead of SK hynix. TrendForce expects all three suppliers ramp up their graphic DRAM production in 2020, so that their bit growth jumps 15% from this year.
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