An investment site called Seeking Alpha has published a bit of strange forensic research that leads it to claim that the Apple iPhone 5 that will be announced tomorrow employs phase-change memory (PCM). What clue led to this conclusion? It was the mention of PCM in a US patent application filed early last year on January 14, 2011, number 20120185797.
Part of the patent application’s description reads:
“ The data processing system 100 includes memory 110 which is coupled to the microprocessor(s) 105. The memory 110 may be used for storing data, metadata, and programs for execution by the microprocessor(s) 105. The memory 110 may include one or more of volatile and non-volatile memories, such as Random Access Memory (“RAM”), Read Only Memory (“ROM”), Flash, Phase Change Memory (“PCM”), or other types of data storage.”
Now this is a real stretch of the imagination if you know how all inclusive companies try to make patent applications. Nevertheless, Micron recently introduced a combo SDRAM/PCM product—see “3D Thursday: Micron stacks Phase-Change Memory and SDRAM”—although the amount of PCM in that product isn’t enough to hold an iPhone’s operating system.
So could the new Apple iPhone 5 contain PCM? It’s certainly not impossible. I guess we just have to wait until tomorrow to find out.