Western Digital Releases Industry’s First 96-Layer 3D NAND UFS 2.1 Embedded Flash Drive for High-End Smartphones

San Jose, CA - October 09, 2018

Advanced UFS-Enabled EFD Enables Always-On Experience for Data-Intensive, Next-Generation Smartphone, Tablet and Compute Devices

iNAND EU321 EFDWestern Digital Corp. (NASDAQ: WDC) today introduced the industry’s first 96-layer 3D NAND UFS 2.1 embedded flash drive (EFD), the Western Digital iNAND® MC EU321, accelerating the possibilities of artificial intelligence (AI), augmented reality (AR), multi-camera high-resolution photography, 4K video capture and other demanding applications for high-end mobile and compute devices.

Leveraging Western Digital’s 96-layer 3D NAND technology, advanced UFS 2.1 interface technologies and Western Digital’s iNAND SmartSLC 5.1 architecture, the new Western Digital iNAND® MC EU321 EFD delivers exceptional data performance for smartphone, tablet and PC notebook devices, enabling outstanding mobile experiences even as the device approaches full capacity.

“Mobile devices have become the hub of our everyday connected lives. As emerging capabilities for 5G speeds, 4K video, AR and VR continue to transform what smartphones, tablets and notebooks are capable of, user expectations and technology requirements to support these rich user experiences are also on the rise,” said Oded Sagee, senior director, product marketing Western Digital. “Our 3D NAND technology enables users to tap into higher embedded storage capacity to support their data needs throughout the smartphone life cycle. In addition, where the performance of a device with traditional storage architecture typically slows down as it nears capacity, the Western Digital iNAND MC EU321 EFD is purpose-built to maintain high performance, enabling users to continue to create, preserve and enjoy their digital experiences.”

The volume, velocity and variety of mobile data is predicted to skyrocket over the next few years as more data-centric capabilities come to mobile and compute devices.

  • Mobile photography and video with multiple high-resolution cameras and AI-assisted photography offer users new capabilities for creating and sharing their digital content.

  • 5G networks will enable ultra-fast download and transfer speeds, transforming the way consumers interact with their devices and content.

  • 5G-powered AI at the mobile device “edge” offers the ability to capture, process and learn from data in real time.

According to Counterpoint Research, average NAND Flash storage capacities are poised to grow at a healthy CAGR of 28% between 2017-2021. The boost in average capacities comes from the pent-up replacement demand from mature tablet users upgrading to powerful, connected models with bigger screens and higher capacities, as entertainment and productivity on the go becomes the key use cases.

All these data-intensive applications require greater capacities and speeds to deliver the seamless on-the-go experience that consumers have come to expect from their mobile devices. In the first half of calendar year 2018 total smartphone shipments had 40 percent more embedded storage capacity than shipments in the first half of calendar year 2017. The equivalent to 51GB per smartphone , creating increased demand for higher capacities and smarter storage technologies.

Optimized for Data-Intensive, High-End Mobile Devices

The iNAND MC EU321 is the latest addition to the iNAND family, which has been trusted by all major smartphone and tablet manufacturers around the world for more than a decade. The iNAND MC EU321 EFD achieves sequential write performance speeds up to 550MB/s enabling exceptional user experiences. Western Digital is currently sampling storage solutions to OEMs in capacities up to 256GB2.

About Western Digital

Western Digital creates environments for data to thrive. The company is driving the innovation needed to help customers capture, preserve, access and transform an ever-increasing diversity of data. Everywhere data lives, from advanced data centers to mobile sensors to personal devices, our industry-leading solutions deliver the possibilities of data. Western Digital® data-centric solutions are marketed under the G-Technology™, HGST, SanDisk®, Tegile™, Upthere™, and WD® brands.


Western Digital, the Western Digital logo, SanDisk, the SanDisk logo, and iNAND are registered trademarks of Western Digital Corporation or its affiliates in the U.S. and/or other countries. All other marks are the property of their respective owners. Pictures shown may vary from actual products. Product specifications subject to change without notice. © 2018 Western Digital Corporation or its affiliates. All rights reserved.

Forward-Looking Statements

This news release contains certain forward-looking statements, including the expected availability, benefits, features, pricing and performance of the Western Digital iNAND MC EU321 storage product. There are a number of risks and uncertainties that may cause these forward-looking statements to be inaccurate including, among others: changes to specifications from standards organizations, volatility in global economic conditions; business conditions and growth in the storage ecosystem; impact of competitive products and pricing; market acceptance and cost of commodity materials and specialized product components; actions by competitors; unexpected advances in competing technologies; our development and introduction of products based on new technologies and expansion into new data storage markets; risks associated with acquisitions, mergers and joint ventures; difficulties or delays in manufacturing; and other risks and uncertainties listed in the company's filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission (the "SEC"), including the company's most recently filed periodic report, to which your attention is directed. You should not place undue reliance on these forward-looking statements, which speak only as of the date hereof, and the company undertakes no obligation to update these forward-looking statements to reflect subsequent events or circumstances.

1Source: IDC Quarterly Mobile Phone Tracker, August 2018
2 1GB = 1,000,000,000 bytes. Actual user storage less.

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