At one time, way before I even thought about starting this article, I was browsing through some online PC stores, looking for ways to upgrade my trusty computer. What I found hidden behind the increasingly popular acronym SSD was a hefty price tag, almost unreasonable for the amount of storage you get.

Currently, Samsung is the leader in SSD production. With the market shifting more and more towards ditching the old-school mech HDD,  they’ve decided to make a huge step forward to make the oversized flash drive more affordable. How may you wonder? It’s simple, mass production. Enter the Samsung QLC SSD.

Quantity Is Key

Everyone knows that things produced in a lot of numbers are cheaper than those rare unicorn ones. Don’t get me wrong, SSDs are not uncommon on their own, but compared to HHDs, they’re still a minority. The larger the capacity of an SSD, the more you pay for it. As a means to help us mortals get our hands on the large size, super fast storage at reasonable prices, Samsung has created the world’s first mass-produced quad level cell (QLC) SATA drive, capable of preserving 4 TB of data.

Samsung QLC SSD
Image Credit: samsung.com

Based on their tried and proven 1 Tb V-NAND chipset, the revolutionary 4-bit Samsung QLC SSD offers groundbreaking performance levels. It’s widely known that solid state drives have no moving parts whatsoever, being pure electronics, which results in reading and write speeds superior to those of mechanical HDDs. As such, the Samsung QLC SSD allows you to use it’s 4 TB of storage capacity at 540 MB/s, while you read data at 520 MB/s. Both figures outmatched the 60-year-old HDD technology by a lot.

The mass production aspect is something that probably wouldn’t exist if it weren’t for the 4th gen 1 Tb V-NAND chip. The newest chip technology enables Samsung to produce an efficient storage device, without loss of performance that usually happens when the bit architecture of the chip increases.

The reason behind the massive performance loss in current chips is the decrease seen in the electrical charge which reads information sent from various sensors. What makes the 4-bit QLC SSD different from the crowd is the way it’s clever electronic brain works. The 4-bit architecture utilizes the 3-bit SSD controller, paired with TurboWrite technology. The outcome is that performance levels remain unchanged while the capacity is increased courtesy of the 32 chips found on the 64 layer 1 Tb V-NAND chip.

Samsung QLC V-NAND
Image Credit: samsung.com

The Fine Line Just Got Thinner

Mobile phones have become increasingly popular in recent years, be it for gaming, social media, photography or even work. Since Samsung is a smartphone giant as well,  it makes perfect sense that they’ve been thinking about ways to give the smartphone crowd cheaper high-capacity memory. They intend to make that with the same 1 Tb 4-bit
V-NAND chip found in the QLC SSD. What you’ll get with the implemented solution is a super fast and highly efficient 128 GB memory card, making the fine line between flagship smartphones and desktop PCs even thinner.

The Samsung QLC SSD Revolution Has Begun

Looking at what Jaesoo Han, executive vice president of memory sales & marketing at Samsung Electronics said in the press release “As we expand our lineup across consumer segments and to the enterprise, 4-bit terabyte-SSD products will rapidly spread throughout the entire market.”, It’s certain that Samsung is making a move to making affordable SSDs a thing. However, the pioneer 2.5” V-NAND based 4 TB Samsung QLC SSD is just the beginning of the revolution. Samsung intends to fill in its lineup with smaller 1 and 2 TB versions due by the end of the year.

It’s not yet known just how affordable and cheaper the Samsung QLC SSD will be, but in my opinion, if they reach at least double the price of same capacity HDDs, that would be amazing. The performance benefits are undoubtedly worth it, as well is the silence, which is a big plus for me. I doubt that it will happen though, but all we have to do is wait and see.