EEPROM is short for Electrically Erasable Programmable Read-Only Memory. It is a non-volatile memory used in devices that are required to hold small amounts of data within a circuit in a compact package. Non-volatile data is able to be erased and reprogrammed.
The read-only memory or ROM can be erased and reprogrammed through the application of electrical voltages. EEPROM chips can be modified whilst still in a computer system and their non-volatile functionality means the memory can be retrieved even after the device or computer has been turned off and back on again.
Where is EEPROM memory used?
EEPROM devices are found in computers, microcontrollers and remote keyless systems to name a few. Flash Memory is another type of EEPROM which is commonly used in applications such as USB sticks.
EEPROM Interface Types:
- Serial EEPROM ICs use interfaces such as SPI or I2C. They often feature lower current consumption and voltage. They are also often smaller as can utilise packages with 8 pins or less.
- Parallel EEPROM ICs offer better memory density and AC performance. It is often quicker than EEPROM but usually has a higher number of pins.
Benefits to EEPROM Memory
There are many benefits to using EEPROM memory in a computer or electronic device. The ability to erase the entire contents of an EEPROM chip as well as being able to erase single bytes per section is invaluable. As well, a variety of interfaces are available for EEPROM with both serial and parallel buses. Programming capabilities of EEPROM are easy and efficient while being programmable without removing from a device board or testing set up.