Hewlett Packard and Sandisk Corporation announced that they are forming a new partnership to explore and develop Storage Class Memory that will be approximately 1000 times faster than conventional flash memory. Sandisk has been working on this technology for some time, calling it ReRam, and HP has their own line of research as well, called memristor. Their immediate target is for server memory and storage, where they hope to produce chips that will not only be tremendously faster, but also offer an equal amount of durability advantage over flash and be cheaper to run, due to lower power requirements.
The SCM products will be available as enterprise SAS, SATA and PCIe-attached products that can be used to replace DRAM, and supplement NAND flash, though there is no word from either company on date of release. Eventually, we will see SCM, non volatile chips designed for broad consumer use, and this could lead to a revolution in onboard storage for small devices like tablets and phones.
This partnership between HP and Sandisk may be a reaction to the joint research and development of similar technology by Intel and Micron, who announced their cooperative alliance a few months ago. Intel has already stated that their products using the new SCM design will be shipping next year.
You can read the announcement from HP and Sandisk here.