According to Silicon Motion product manager Liu Yaoren, the first laptops with PCIe 5.0 SSDs will hit the market by the end of 2024. He made this prediction back in August at the 2023 Flash Memory Summit Conference and Exhibition, but the media only recently started paying attention to this statement.
The American-Taiwanese company showed a new SM2508 storage controller at the last trade fair, presenting it as an answer to the Phison E26 controller. Silicon Motion’s flagship solution will offer sequential read and write speeds of up to 14 GB/s. The random read performance is 2.5 million IOPS and the write performance is 2.4 million IOPS. The controller supports 3600 MT/s per pin flash memory chips that are not yet on the market. In other words: the SM2508 is future-proof.
According to ITHome, the flagship Silicon Motion SM2508 controller is manufactured using TSMC’s advanced 6nm process technology. The chip contains two Cortex-R8 cores. The controller’s operating TDP is approximately 3.5W. The company claims that its product did this “the ultimate performance potential of PCIe 5.0” and low power consumption.
The main reason for laptop manufacturers to use PCIe 5.0 SSDs in their devices is the higher power consumption and associated higher operating temperature of the new standard SSD, which requires the use of efficient and very massive heat sinks. For laptops, this is not always practical, since there is simply no room in the limited space of a laptop to install large coolers for SSDs. The solution to the problem could be to develop more energy efficient and cooler SSD storage controllers.