OCZ's original Vertex solid-state drive can probably be credited for popularizing Indilinx's controller design. Turns out, OCZ liked the controller so much, it bought the company. Well, maybe that's not exactly how things went down. The deal is official, though. For a cool $32 million in stock, OCZ gets Indilinx and its "substantial intellectual property," including some 20 patents and related applications. Interestingly, Indilinx will continue to produce controllers for other SSD makers, and OCZ won't stop using third-party controller tech:
Following its acquisition by OCZ, Indilinx will continue to produce and supply its line of controller products to SSD manufacturers and OEMs on a global basis. The Indilinx controller business, and its 45 employees, will remain intact under the leadership of Bumsoo Kim, the founder and President of Indilinx, and Hyunmo Chung, Indilinx's Chief Technology Officer. OCZ will continue its own R&D program to develop new proprietary technologies and products to expand its own solid state drive offerings.
The Indilinx acquisition notwithstanding, OCZ plans to continue utilizing controllers from other manufacturers including long-term partner SandForce, who currently supplies SSD processors for a wide range of the Company's SSD products including the Vertex 2, Agility 2, RevoDrive, customizable Deneva enterprise drives, and the upcoming Vertex 3 family of SSDs.
This acquisition gives OCZ the resources to do some very interesting things with solid-state storage. I get the feeling that the company is gearing up to throw some of Indilinx's weight—and brains—into enterprise storage products, perhaps with an eye toward offering more custom solutions like the HSDL interface featured on OCZ's Ibis drive. The press release also notes that Indilinx tech gives OCZ a gateway to other SSD markets, including consumer electronics devices, smartphones, and tablets.
For PC enthusiasts looking at standard 2.5" SSDs, the Indilinx acquisition may have little impact in the near term. OCZ is still committed to using SandForce controllers, and Indilinx will continue to sell its silicon to other drive makers. I do wonder what OCZ's consumer SSD lineup will look like a year from now, though.
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