Samsung's Tiny New SSD Can Transfer A Full HD Movie In 3 Seconds

Samsung has begun mass producing the industry's first NVMe PCIe solid state drive (SSD) in a single ball grid array (BGA) package.

The tiny (we're talking 20mm x 16mm x 1.5mm, weighing just a single gram here) new BGA NVMe SSD, named PM971-NVMe, has everything you'd expect from a full sized SSD -- including NAND flash memory, DRAM and controller -- and more.

"Samsung’s new BGA NVMe SSD triples the performance of a typical SATA SSD, in the smallest form factor available, with storage capacity reaching up to 512GB," said Jung-bae Lee, senior vice president, Memory Product Planning & Application Engineering Team, Samsung Electronics.

"The introduction of this small-scale SSD will help global PC companies to make timely launches of slimmer, more stylish computing devices, while offering consumers a more satisfactory computing environment."

Configuring the PM971-NVMe SSD in a single BGA package was enabled by combining 16 of Samsung's 48-layer 256-gigabit (Gb) V-NAND flash chips, one 20-nanometer 4Gb LPDDR4 mobile DRAM chip and a high-performance Samsung controller.

The single-package SSD's volume is approximately a hundredth of a 2.5-inch SSD or HDD, and its surface area is about a fifth of an M.2 SSD, allowing much more design flexibility for computing device manufacturers.

In addition, the PM971-NVMe SSD delivers a level of performance that easily surpasses the speed limit of a SATA 6Gb/s interface. It enables sequential read and write speeds of up to 1,500MB/s (megabytes per second) and 900MB/s respectively, when TurboWrite technology is used (TurboWrite temporarily uses certain portions of an SSD as a write buffer).

The performance figures can be directly compared to transferring a 5GB-equivalent, Full-HD movie in about 3 seconds or downloading it in about 6 seconds. It also boasts random read and write IOPS (input output operations per second) of up to 190K and 150K respectively, to easily handle high-speed operations.

A hard drive, by contrast, will only process up to 120 IOPS in random reads, making the new Samsung SSD more than 1500 times faster than an HDD in this regard.

The PM971-NVMe SSD line-up will be available this month in 512GB, 256GB and 128GB storage options.