SAN JOSE, Calif. Spot prices for NAND-based flash memories continue to fall at an alarming rate amid ongoing rumors of product order cancellations from Apple Computer Inc. and Sony Corp., according to Gartner Inc.
“After two months of NAND flash spot declines, culminating in a 10 percent drop during the week ending 17 February, NAND flash spot pricing fell again by almost 11 percent [for the week ending February 24],” according to a report from Gartner.
As reported earlier this month, the share prices of flash memory chip makers fell on rumors that demand is softening for the memory type. Particular concerns centered on an anticipated order for NAND flash from Sony for its Playstation Portable, which may not materialize and on Apple Computer Inc., which could cut output of its iPod music player in the first quarter of 2006.
“In Gartner Dataquest’s view, these concerns are valid,” according to the report from the market research firm. “It is quite likely that Apple may have scaled back its plans for flash-based music players.”
For its own MP3 line, Japan’s Sony is reportedly debating whether it will use an 8-gigabit flash memory device or a rival technology in a 1-inch hard drive. In doing so, Sony is “jockeying for the upper hand with pricing at Samsung,” according to the report.