Micron has introduced the world's highest-density DDR3 memory chip, leading the way to faster, larger computer memory that uses less power.

DDR3 (double data rate 3rd generation) doubles the access speed from the current mainstream DDR2 memory with clock frequencies of 400MHz to 800MHz and data rates of 800 to 1600 MT/s (megatransfers per second) respectively. This would mean a 100,000 page document could be transferred in approximately one second.

Micron has also reduced the supply voltage to 1.5v, meaning a power reduction of up to 30 percent. "Early 2007 should bring memory-thirsty computing and consumer applications, such as Microsoft's anticipated Vista operating system. DDR3 will initially benefit the server, notebook, and desktop markets and will then reach consumer applications such as graphics and HDTVs," said Shane Rau, a senior IDC analyst.

Micron anticipates 1Gb DDR3 production starting next year - evaluation samples are ready now. It will have a range of module densities from 512MB through to 4GB in a variety of module types: BDIMMs, UDIMMs, SODIMMs, and RDIMMs. Computers using DDR3 memory will need the several chips on the main or motherboard, the chipset, to support its use.

Intel's Bearlake chipset will be the first to support DDR3 and it is expected to arrive in the third quarter of 2007. In early 2007, Micron expects to announce a 2Gb DDR3 chip, meaning even higher capacity memory configurations. Competitor Samsung has a 512Mb DDR3 chip and can be expected to reach both 1Gb and 2Gb capacities as well.