3D XPoint promises 1000x the endurance of NAND flash memory, up to 1000x the performance and 10x the density as well. The first products based on 3D XPoint are expected next year and initial products will include Optane SSDs and DIMMs.
All Optane based devices will feature a cross point array structure, which consists of perpendicular connectors connecting around 128 Billion memory cells (16 Gigabytes per chip). This “3D” method is the reason why Optane based devices have 10x times the density of conventional solutions. Like DRAM, Optane memory is stackable in nature. One of the biggest changes in this technology however is that it eliminates the need for transistors – accessing the memory cells by varying the voltage sent to the particular sector. Basically, using the bulk of the material itself.
The Optane SSD was able to achieve 7.2x times more IOPS at low queue depth and upto 5.21 times the IOPs of conventional SSDs at high queue depths. An Optane Technology based SSD has 10x times the density of conventional SSD drives. The marketing material also claims it is 1000x faster than the competition available on the market but it isn’t clear to what exactly they are referring to – a good guess would be latency, as opposed to bandwidth. Optane SSDs will have 1000x the endurance – which, if true, should mean the device has virtually unlimited life span for practical purposes.