Macronix expands automotive NOR flash market presence

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Macronix chairman Miin Wu. Credit: DIGITIMES

Macronix International has gradually expanded its share of global car-use NOR flash market with its offerings already on a par with bigger international counterparts including Infineon, according to Miin Wu, chairman for the Taiwan-based memory chipmaker.

Currently, the global automotive NOR market is roughly a match between two major players, according to industry sources. Infineon has been engaged in the automotive market for many years with big clientele, but the gap between Macronix and the IDM is getting smaller and smaller, added the sources.

Against an aggressive pricing strategy at Infineon, Macronix’s quotes for automotive NOR flash chips have already surpassed the competitor’s, resulting in better profit performance for the company, said the sources, stressing that Marcronix’s strategy is very simple: it gives priority to making profit over expanding market share.

Macronix’s NOR flash products, meeting the stringent temperature requirement for the space environment, have also penetrated the low-earth-orbit (LEO) satellite market segment, Wu disclosed, and the company will strive to lead the segment worldwide in the next 10 years.

Wu has also vowed to lead Macronix toward the development of memory-centric solutions boasting both storage and computing capabilities in the next decade. And 3D NAND, with the highest density and lowest manufacturing cost, is expected to become the new mainstream in the memory market.

Macronix has started volume shipments of 48-layer 3D NAND products, and is set to enter mass production of 96-layer offerings by the end of 2022. Wu pointed out that the company will endeavor to become the world’s top vendor in the segment in the future, although the goal is very hard to achieve amid intense competition from Samsung Electronics, SK Hynix and Micron Technology.

Macronix has readied related market development roadmaps, under which it will first stand firm in the NOR market before fighting hard in the NAND battlefield, according to Wu.

Its sales in the China market were a little affected by lockdowns in eastern Chinese cities in the past two months, but will be back to normal along with the reopening of Shanghai starting June 1, Wu added. Other cities including Kunshan were successively unsealed in the course of May.


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