Is UFS adoption in tablets and smart phones threatened by the recent advent of eMMC 5.0?
Many companies were surprised by the unexpected eMMC developments last November, when Samsung announced availability of a 260MB/s eMMC device. The announcement roiled the mobile storage industry and led JEDEC to hastily finalize a revision to the eMMC specification. The result is eMMC 5.0 with a peak transfer rate of 400 MB/s (equivalent to 3.2 Gbps). This moves eMMC slightly ahead of UFS v1.1 with 2.9 Gbps transfer rate. To further blur the advantage of UFS, some advanced features originally intended for UFS are now been planned for future eMMC revisions.
The new eMMC 5.0 specification will also be introduced in the 3rd quarter of this year; its maximum data transfer rate will be 400MB/s or 3.2 Gbps in 8-bit bus operation. This high data transfer rate fills the performance gap before UFS entire ecosystem is available. In addition, an eMMC version of command queuing is now on eMMC roadmap for a future specification revision. It is also possible that eMMC will continue to increase the maximum data transfer by another factor of two.
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