The price of flash memory, especially 4GB is increasing since middle of last week (6/5/2013). This trend is likely to continue during Q3 and Q4. At best we will see prices fluctuating crazily during this time period, and probably trending up over time. There are several reasons for the price increases:
1. The demand of Mobile Internet Device and cellphones are absorbing huge quantity of flash memory. We have heard rumors from Samsung that due to increasing demand for their mobile devices, their own supply will not be enough to fulfill all of the demand, so they will buy some memory from Toshiba to meet their demand commits, further constraining supply for our channel.
2. Due to developing technologies ( transition from MLC to TLC) and recent conversion to smaller chip die technologies, Toshiba, Intel, Micron, Hynix, etc. are no longer producing memory < 4GB in Capacity as the new die technologies yield 8GB modules. The supply of memory less than 8GB now is predominantly made up of new downgraded 8GB modules. The supply on capacities greater than 8GB will likely be unstable at best and will continue to cause price volatility, and keep prices from declining from current levels and will probably drive prices up over the long term.
3. And of course the flash manufacturers all want the price to go up as the low levels we have seen over the last several years do not enable them to make sufficient profit on flash chips.
Please be aware of these market conditions and let your customers know – especially for larger opportunities.