TAIPEI — Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co. (TSMC, 台積電), the world’s largest contract chip maker, said Tuesday it has completed a silicon validation of 64-bit chips made on the 16 nanometer process for British chip designer ARM Holdings PLC, representing a breakthrough in cooperation for the industry giants. The silicon results on TSMC’s advanced 16-nm FinFET process technology show that the Cortex-A57 processor can achieve a speed of 2.3 GHz for sustained mobile peak performance, while the lower-end Cortex-A53 processor consumes 75 milliwatts for most common workloads, it said in a statement.
Bit demand for non-PC DRAM, mainly niche mobile DRAM and server-use DRAM, will increase 38% on year in the second half of 2014, much higher than 2.7% for standard DRAM, according to Digitimes Research. In particular, bit demand for server-use DRAM will soar by an annual rate of 46.6% in the second half of 2014 due to fast growing cloud computing and big data applications.
China-based foundry houses, including Shanghai Huali Microelectronics, XMC and Semiconductor Manufacturing International Corporation (SMIC), have stepped up efforts to solicit foundry orders from Taiwan-based IC design houses, according to industry sources. Shanghai Huali, which focuses on specialty processes, reportedly has teamed up with MediaTek and now aims to land orders from Taiwan-based LCD driver IC and flash chip vendors, said the sources.
TAIPEI–Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co. (TSMC), the world’s largest contract chip maker, is expected to take an 84-percent share in the high-end technology market of the global semiconductor wafer foundry business, according to a research report. In the report, market information advisory firm IC Insights said that TSMC is expected to post US$10.3 billion in sales from the 28 nanometer process or more advanced chip making technology in 2014, accounting for about 84 percent of the global total.
Intel (NASDAQ:INTC) confirmed today that it’s paying RMB 9 billion (US$1.47 billion) to take a 20 percent stake in Chinese chip-maker Spreadtrum (NASDAQ:SPRD). Spreadtrum is part of Beijing-based Tsinghua Unigroup. That’s the state-owned spin-off of the renowned Tsinghua University, which owns the CPU maker as well as RDA Microelectronics. “The purpose of the agreements is to expand the product offerings and adoption for Intel-based mobile devices in China,” says today’s announcement by the company.
Chip suppliers are expected to begin to pull in orders for wafers in order to produce chips for non-Apple device vendors, a move which is likely to start a new round of competition for wafer capacity, according to industry sources. Most wafer foundry houses, particularly Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company (TSMC), have been running nearly at full capacity since the beginning of 2014 as they have to ramp up output to meet demand from non-Apple device vendors in the first half of the year before related Apple suppliers begin to pull in orders in the second half.
TAIPEI — A product teardown by research firm IHS Inc. has found that South Korea’s Samsung Electronics Co. is still supplying some processor chips for Apple Inc.’s larger-screen iPhones, although more orders are going to Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co. (TSMC, 台積電). In an analysis report published Tuesday, IHS said the Apple-designed A8 processor used in both the 4.7-inch iPhone 6 and the 5.5-inch iPhone 6 Plus is not supplied entirely by Samsung, signaling a major departure in component supplier selection from previous iPhone models.
Prices of entry-level 4G smartphone solutions have dropped to US$8-9 per unit recently and could slip to US$6-7 in the first half of 2015 as chipset solution vendors are applying aggressive pricing in order to land design-wins for smartphones to be released in early 2015, according to industry sources. MediaTek, Marvell Technology and Broadcom have cut prices of their 4G 32-bit quad-core solutions to US$8-9 after Qualcomm unveiled its Snapdragon 210, priced at US$9, said the sources.
TAIPEI, Taiwan — The MediaTek-based Android One smartphone rose to the top of the “Bestsellers in Electronics” list on Amazon India’s online shopping website just days after it was launched, according to Chinese-language paper Commercial Times. India-based smartphone vendors, including Karbonn, Micromax and Spice, began to market the Android One smartphones featuring MediaTek Inc.’s (聯發科技) MT6582 mobile system-on-chip from Sept. 15, MediaTek revealed.
TAIPEI–A new cost-competitive 28-nanometer process developed by Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co. (TSMC, 台灣積體電路) may help the world’s largest contract chip maker gain more market share, according to Germany’s Deutsche Bank AG. TSMC announced Sept. 12 that it has started mass production of the 28-nanometer High Performance Compact (28HPC) process, claiming it to be the most power- and cost-efficient solution among all 28-nanometer technologies in the foundry segment.
Foreign chipset suppliers have placed follow-up orders for chips to be used in iPhone 6 devices with Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company (TSMC), extending order visibility of foundry houses to the first quarter of 2015, according to industry sources. Some analog IC suppliers indicated that Apple aims to ship 80-100 million units of the iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus in 2014, and initial response to the new iPhone devices seems to be enthusiastic and could gain momentum.
NEW DELHI: Buoyed by the initial response to Android One smartphones, chip maker MediaTek today said it expects as many as two million handsets to be sold this year in India, the world’s second largest market for mobile phones. The Taiwan-headquartered company has partnered with US-based tech giant Google on Android One, an initiative to provide a family of high-quality, yet affordable Android devices for consumers in emerging markets like India.
Mainly because Qualcomm has offered an inexpensive 4G chip solution to compete with Taiwan-based MediaTek and market competition for 4G smartphones among China-based vendors has been heating up, prices for a 4G smartphone have dropped to below US$200 and are expected to further slip to below US$100 in the first half of 2015, according to Taiwan-based supply chain makers.
TAIPEI, Taiwan — According to a recent report by Deutsche Bank AG, TSMC (台積電) is poised to command more than 70 percent of the global market for 28-nanometer and 32-nanometer semiconductor fabrication, as the Taiwan-based sector bellwether commences mass production of its high-performance 28-nanometer variant (HPC) designed to power low- and mid-tier mobile devices.
TAIPEI, Taiwan — As global markets await the unveiling of Apple’s iPhone 6 handset, reports indicate that analysts are expecting TSMC to secure manufacturing orders for the U.S.-based company’s upcoming A9 processor that is slated to power next year’s iPhone handset. Given its status as the bellwether of the smartphone sector, the contest to secure manufacturing orders for the processor powering each year’s iPhone handset has become the most important battle for semiconductor companies worldwide.
TAIPEI–MediaTek Inc. (聯發科), one of Taiwan’s leading integrated circuit designers, said Friday that sales hit a fresh high in August, with market analysts attributing the growth to strong demand for smartphone chips from China. Chinese smartphone brands moving to build up their inventories ahead of an expected buying spree during China’s Oct. 1 National Day holiday were behind MediaTek’s uptrend, which benefited from peak season effects.
TAIPEI, Taiwan — On course to enjoy the largest growth in regional semiconductor manufacturing equipment and materials capital expenditures for 2014-15, Taiwan will bring this investment energy into focus on Sept. 3-5 at SEMICON Taiwan 2014. SEMICON Taiwan 2014 is expected to be the largest ever in its 19-year history, featuring 1,340 booths and reaching over 40,000 attendees and exhibitors at the Taipei World Trade Center Nangang Exhibition Hall (南港展覽館).
TAIPEI–Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co. (TSMC), Hon Hai Precision Industry Co., and MediaTek Inc. ranked as the three largest research and development spenders among the manufacturers listed on Taiwan’s main board and the over-the-counter (OTC) market in the second quarter of his year, according to the Ministry of Economic Affairs (MOEA). Citing statistics, the MOEA said that the TSMC, the world’s largest contract chip maker, spent NT$13.6 billion (US$453 million) in R&D expenses during the April-June period, topping R&D spending rankings among Taiwan’s listed manufacturers.
Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company (TSMC) has informed Taiwan-based IC design houses that its production capacity for the fourth quarter of 2014 is almost fully booked, and urged vendors which are short of production capacity to book wafer orders in advance, according to industry sources. While the supply of wafers at TSMC is tight for the third quarter, the nearly sold-out wafer production for the fourth quarter at TSMC has placed most IC design houses in a dilemma as to whether they should queue up at TSMC for capacity.
Wafer foundry houses reportedly have been seeking cooperation with cooling module makers looking to apply cooling solutions into chips during the manufacturing process. So far the cooperation is still at an early stage and no substantial results have been achieved, according to sources from cooling module players. The sources pointed out that by packing more and more functions, mobile devices are creating heavy burdens on their processor chips and increasing power consumption. To resolve the resulting heat issue, the wafer foundry houses are considering placing cooling solutions directly into the processors.