Cornice Broadens Storage Line in Retail Push

By Mark Hachman  |  Posted 2004-05-24
Cornice has added a smaller, 1GB capacity to its line of "storage elements" in a more direct attack on the flash market.

The addition means that Cornice Inc. now offers 1GB, 1.5GB, and 2GB capacity points within its Storage Element line, which takes a 1-inch hard-disk-like device and strips it down to reduce cost.

Cornices chief competitor is flash memory, which is used by digital camera, MP3 players and other consumer-electronics devices to store data files.

While consumer flash cards tend to top out at 1GB, the additional capacity Cornice offers serves a limited market. Cornices move is designed to take Cornice-based products into retail, rather than serve the specialty markets, said Scott Holt, executive vice president of Cornice.

The new 1GB capacity point only uses one side of the magnetic disk platter, and future integration will shave costs further, he said.

"What theyre telling me is that 256MB [flash] prices are $42, and it hasnt moved down," he said. "What theyre telling me, though, is that additional capacity is coming on line."

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Reuters reported Monday that both Samsung and Toshiba, who own about 90 percent of the flash market, are beginning to aggressively cut prices to drive prices down even more.

The price for a 2GB Cornice SE drive is in the "low sixties," Holt said, and will have to be driven down into the "low fifties" to be viable, he said. Currently, one gigabit of flash memory costs $16.58, according to the DRAMxchange. Eight gigabit chips have to be mounted on a board to compose a gigabyte of memory, which will cost almost $133.

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