July 29, 2015 — Technology, and memory technology in particular, can be overwhelming with so many speeds and specifications to keep track of. 3D XPoint technology presents many potential advantages for certain high-performance applications. The examples below help visualize these advantages in a more abstract way, using examples from daily life.
3D XPoint Technology Performance
3D XPoint technology is up to 1,000x faster than NAND.
- The average daily commute of Americans would reduce from 25 minutes in traffic to 1.5 seconds.
- Traveling by plane from San Francisco to Beijing could happen in about 43 seconds, instead of the 12 hours it takes now.
- The Great Wall of China could have been built in 73 days instead of 200 years.
HDD latency is measured in milliseconds, NAND latency is measured in microseconds, and 3D XPoint technology latency is measured in nanoseconds (one-billionth of a second).
In the time it takes an HDD to sprint the length of a basketball court, NAND could finish a marathon, and 3D XPoint technology could nearly circle the globe.
If computer storage were modes of travel:
- HDDs could take you from New York to Los Angeles by car in 4 days (2,500 miles).
- SSDs could get you to the moon in the same amount time (240,000 miles)
- 3D XPoint technology could get you to Mars and back in the same time (280 million miles).
3D XPoint Technology Endurance
3D XPoint technology has up to 1,000x the endurance of NAND.
- If 3D XPoint technology were your car’s engine oil, you would need an oil change a lot less often: once every 3,000,000 miles – the equivalent of driving around the world at the equator 120 times, or close to once around the sun.
- If your car got 1000x the gas mileage, the average driver would fill up once every 25 years.
A consumer-grade SSD can write 40 gigabytes per day—enough to write 8.6 copies of the Encyclopedia Britannica or 10,000 MP3 files to the drive, every day for five years.
- An SSD with up to 1,000x increase in endurance could write the entire printed collection of the U.S. Library of Congress (20TB) twice every day. After five years, that’s the equivalent of 1.46 billion standard four-drawer file cabinets full of text or 73 petabytes.