by Brian Beeler

LSI 4Q 2011 - WarpDrive Selected by EMC, WarpDrive 2 Nears Production

LSI reported their fourth quarter of 2011 which ended in December with revenues of $523 million. The quarter's highlights included: launch of the first 28nm read channel for hard drives, awarded 6Gb SAS controller design for HP's Romley generation of servers, selected by EMC for participation in Project Lightning, and LSI's Axxia multi-core processor has been adopted by the leading wireless equipment provider. LSI is forecasting revenue for Q1 2012 to be in the $550 - $590 million range. The SandForce acquisition closed on January 3, 2012 and will play a material role in LSI's growth this year. 

One of the key product highlights from the LSI call was the announcement that their WarpDrive PCIe SSD has been qualified by EMC for their server flash product that they're calling Project Lightning. WarpDrive also gained acceptance by Cisco for custom blade server applications. LSI has also sold into a Tier 1 server OEM with a solution that includes WarpDrive combined with CacheCade caching software. When LSI announced the SandForce acquisition, they indicated the PCIe SSD business was a core focus for them, clearly with these and other wins, LSI is making tremendous progress.

LSI WarpDrive 2 LP
LSI WarpDrive 2 LP

LSI is near production of their second generation PCIe SSD, the LSI WarpDrive 2 LP. WarpDrive 2 uses the latest generation of SandForce controllers and integrate LSI's CacheCade software for application acceleration. 

Other Quarter Highlights:

  • SandForce will make up $20-$25 million of LSI's first quarter revenue in 2012
  • LSI expects to begin shipping 6Gb SAS silicon to all top 10 server OEMs this quarter with the rollout of the Intel Romley platform
  • Server and external storage OEMs have already begun the evaluation and selection process of 12Gb SAS, full production expected in 2013
  • LSI continues to gain share in Seagate’s enterprise platforms
  • First supplier shipping SSCs for 1 terabyte per platter hard drives to customers
  • Introduced the industry's first 28nm read channel featuring a new LDPC architecture, enabling HD manufacturers to achieve increased areal density, higher yield and lower power consumption for HDDs
  • Customer-specific SSC samples built on this 28nm technology will become available in the first half of this year

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