TOKYO Nov 27 Japan's Toshiba Corp (6502.T) said
it planned to increase its output of flash memory-based solid
state drives (SSDs) 15-fold over the next two years, aiming to
control half of the global market for the new memory devices.
SSDs, which use NAND flash memory, are seen as a promising
alternative to hard disk drives used in laptop PCs as they are
more shock-resistant and consume less power.
Toshiba, the world's No. 2 maker of NAND flash memory, and
rivals such as top-ranked Samsung Electronics (005930.KS) are
hoping growth in the SSD market will help revive the industry,
which is battling steep price falls due to over-capacity.
The high cost of SSDs compared with hard disk drives with the
same memory capacity has until now hindered PC makers' shift to
flash memory-based drives, but the rising popularity of smaller,
cheaper PCs is expected to boost demand for the new technology.
Toshiba said it planned to expand SSD output at its Yokkaichi
factory in western Japan to 600,000 units a month by March 2011
from the current 40,000 units a month, and it projects about 10
percent of laptop PCs worldwide will use the new drives in
Samsung and Toshiba partner SanDisk Corp SNDK.O already
make solid-state drives.
Toshiba shares were up 3.3 percent at 345 yen as of 0145 GMT,
outperforming a 2.4 percent rise in the Nikkei average .N225.
(Reporting by Sachi Izumi; Editing by Hugh Lawson)