|According to data from DRAMeXchange, contract quotes for 1GB DDR2 667 DRAM modules stopped their recent decline to remain stable at around US$17 in the early January this year. However, while some market watchers have been quick to dismiss the the flat pricing as signs of improvement in the market, attributing the stability to the effects of better-than-expected sales performance during the holiday season and additional orders from first-tier PC OEMs, DRAM makers are keen to believe that price trends will continue to stabilize.
Currently, most DRAM contract quotes are showing signs of stabilization, although clients with smaller volumes have been forced to accept higher prices. However, pricing is still lower than cost, meaning DRAM makers are still not willing to accept the current offerings, according to sources at DRAM makers.
Additionally, demand is slowly rising due to brisk sales during the holiday season last year, leading first-tier PC OEMs to start restocking their inventory, the sources pointed out.
From the demand side, the average DRAM capacity per PC in the first quarter of 2008 is estimated at 1.5-1.7GB, a 10% increase compared to that in the fourth quarter of 2007. However, DRAM production capacity will also see around 10% growth, making the chance for DRAM contract quotes to drop very small, noted the sources.
With the average DRAM capacity in high-end desktop and notebook PCs to increase to 3-4GB in 2008, this will help increase overall DRAM capacity in all other PC segments, while low-cost PCs will also help to digest excess capacity, the makers added.