Toshiba has developed a new high-speed prototype version of MRAM memory that can allegedly reduce the memory type\’s overall power consumption by 90 percent — making it the lowest on record.
The Tokyo-based company announced today that its version of spin transfer torque magnetoresistive random access memory (STT-MRAM) can be used as cache memory in smartphones\’ mobile processors, theoretically making it a replacement for today\’s SRAM standard.
\”Recently, the amount of SRAM used in mobile application processors has been increasing, and this has increased the power usage,\” said Toshiba\’s Atsushi Ido. \”This research is focused on cutting the power consumption, while increasing speed, as opposed to increasing the amount of memory.\”
MRAM was unveiled a few years back as a next-gen alternative to SRAM, and was especially notable due to its ability to retain data even when powered off. However, it has since struggled to gain significant traction due to its tendency to leak currents and consume more power. But now, Toshiba may have turned the tables.
There\’s currently no timeframe as to when Toshiba would be integrating the new MRAM into actual devices, the company says that it has tested it with a \”highly accurate processor simulator,\” and that it will be accelerating research to get the product fully ready. If all goes according to plan, the new cache could make future smartphones and tablets save more power and run faster than before, albeit at the expense of some overall memory.