Adesto Wants to Make It Big With Small Chips

A memory-chip maker eyes smart gadgets as an untapped market

Adesto Technologies is trying to break into one of the toughest businesses in the technology industry: memory chips. Chief Executive Officer Narbeh Derhacobian is betting that the big names—Samsung Electronics, Micron Technology, SK Hynix, and Toshiba—are so focused on making large chips used in memory-hungry laptops and smartphones that they’ve forgotten to think small. He wants to control the growing market in chips for smart gadgets, such as fitness-tracking wristbands and other Web-connected devices, which can’t hold enough battery power for the bigger, faster chips. “We have a huge opportunity over the big memory players,” he says. “It’s going to be interesting how these companies react, even if they react.”

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