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Flash memory price drop forces Toshiba to cut production 30%

Toshiba says there's an oversupply of NAND flash memory on the market. In response, it will slash output 30 percent.

A solid-state drive with Toshiba NAND flash memory chips used in the MacBook Air.
A solid-state drive with Toshiba NAND flash memory chips used in the MacBook Air.

Toshiba will pare flash memory production 30 percent due to an oversupply of the chips used in smartphones, tablets, and PCs.

Effective today, Toshiba is making an "adjustment to production" of NAND flash memory at its Yokkaichi Operation plant in Mie Prefecture, Japan, resulting in output cut of approximately 30 percent, the company announced.

"Oversupply of NAND flash memory in the retail market, for application in USB memories and memory cards, has resulted in continual price declines since the beginning of this year," Toshiba said.

Toshiba hopes the move will help to reduce inventory in the market and improve the overall balance between supply and demand.

And prices are expected to recover. "High growth rates are forecast for PCs and Smartphones, the drivers of global market demand of NAND flash memory, and the supply and demand balance is expected to improve in the current quarter, from July to September," Toshiba added.

The Japanese company -- one of the largest flash chip manufacturers in the world and a major supplier to Apple -- will continue to "closely monitor the NAND market" and boost production when necessary, the company said.

A quick glance at Amazon, shows a SanDisk 64GB USB flash drive retailing for $32.49. And a Lexar Echo MX 128GB USB drive priced at $99.99.