Intel’s superfast Optane SSDs, which utilize the chip maker’s new 3D Xpoint technology, are scheduled to become available as early as the end of this year, according to a leaked roadmap. The chip maker is planning the 3 series of its Optane SSDs, reveals the leaked roadmap posted by Chinese website Bench Life.
Intel planning 3 series of Optane SSDs
Bench Life reveals that the 3 series will go by the code-names Stony Beach, Mansion Beach and Brighton Beach. The first Optane SSD will be Mansion Beach and could be released in the fourth quarter of this year. The drives are targeted at enthusiasts and workstations and will utilize the PCIe/NVMe interface Gen 3×4. Mansion Beach is listed to have the same target audience as Intel’s current 750 series SSDs.
Brighton Beach is targeted at the same audience, but it utilizes the slower PCIe Gen 3×2 interface instead of the PCIe/NVMe interface Gen 3×4. The Brighton Beach drives will be succeeded by the Carson Beach Optane SSDs and are scheduled for release in the first quarter of 2017.
The last Optane devices on the roadmap are listed for “System acceleration” and are code-named Stony Beach. Instead of calling them Optane SSDs, the roadmap refers to them as Optane Memory. They will be available in an M.2. formfactor and will be PCIe/NVMe Gen 2×3 devices. The Stony Beach devices should become available by the fourth quarter of this year.
Kaby Lake to be followed by Cannon Lake
According to the roadmap, Kaby Lake, Intel’s Skylake successor, should become available in the third quarter of this year. The chip maker will put the Kaby Lake processor family into mass production “later this quarter,” said Intel’s Client Computing Group Chief Navin Sheno at the recent Computex trade show in Taiwan.
Cannonlake, listed as CNL on the roadmap, will follow Kaby Lake. Cannonlake will get support for Carson Beach Optane Memory devices, the Mansion Beach Refresh and Carson Beach SSDs, according to the roadmap.
In addition, Intel’s second-generation SATA drives and 3D NAND PCIe should be ready by the same time. The chip maker lists these as drives as being targeted at mainstream users. It appears that Optane will not become a mainstream product in the near future, and this will likely become evident when the pricing information becomes available. The chip making giant will continue to develop “regular” SSDs to serve the mainstream audience.
On Monday, Intel shares closed up 0.41% at $32.17. Year to date, the stock is down by over 8%, while in the last year, it is up almost 3%. The stock has a 52-week high of $35.59 and a 52-week low of $24.87.