When most people think about power, they focus on battery life, but power decisions also affect area and dynamic performance. Lowering power consumption increases system performance by allowing battery or RF-powered MTP NVM devices to function for a longer time and from further away or through using smaller antennas. Reducing power can also lower system area, enabling lower cost and a wider range of packaging options. There is often a link between power and area and this combined reduction enables new applications such as RFID and Internet-of-Things (IoT).
When power is a key concern, starting with a technology evaluation can be the right approach followed by balancing how much NVM is needed in the system. As an example, higher density memories will typically require higher peak and average currents while NVM programming mechanisms (e-injection, blown gate, FN tunneling, etc) differ in currents as well. Figure 3 illustrates some fundamental differences between two popular programming mechanisms that can have an effect on supporting circuits and total area of the NVM.