Cypress to Sell MRAM Subsidiary

Despite sampling MRAM, and 4 validating customers (out of 7 who got shipped MRAM samples), Cypress wants to sell its MRAM subsidiary.

"The second phase of our MRAM plan was to create a family of high-density MRAMs, ranging from four to 64 megabits in density. This segment of the MRAM market is much larger than the battery-backup SRAM market, partly because it offers the potential to take market share from the multibillion-dollar standard SRAM market, if the MRAM bit cost can be reduced to parity with the SRAM bit cost. Our battery-backup MRAM cell utilizes three transistors and two magnetic tunnel junctions (3T-2MTJ) per bit. In higher-density MRAMs, economic viability can be achieved only by switching to the simpler and denser 1T-1MTJ cell. The 1T-1MTJ cell is more difficult to design and manufacture than the 3T-2MTJ cell, which was invented at Cypress to solve the design and manufacturing problems that have prevented the commercialization of MRAM, despite over a decade of work by some of the world's most prominent semiconductor companies.

"Based on our latest calculations at Cypress, we no longer believe that the 1T-1MTJ MRAM technology will be able to successfully attack the SRAM market, leaving MRAM as a niche technology with higher bit pricing than that of SRAM."

Posted: Feb 14,2005 by Ron Mertens