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TSMC breaks ground on the world’s first 20 nanometer fab, watch out Intel!

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by 1 year ago
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Chances are that the smartphone you have in your pocket right now is powered by a chip that was made by the Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company, TSMC for short. Qualcomm uses TSMC, NVIDIA uses TSMC, and roughly 150 other companies also depend on TSMC for their chips. According to Focus Taiwan, TSMC just broke ground on a new factory, or fab in industry parlance, that will pump out 20 nanometer chips.

Globalfoundries says their new 14 nm transistors can boost battery life by 60%

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by 1 year ago
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Globalfoundries is a company that deals with the fabrication of chips. Companies like Qualcomm or Texas Instruments design chips, but then they have to send those designs to someone like Globalfoundries to make the physical products that handset makers then put into their devices. The chips in today’s flagship phones are made using chips that have transistors that are either 28 nanometers (Snapdragon S4) or 32 nanometers (Samsung Exynos 4 Quad) in size. Globalfoundries says they’re ready to make 14 nm chips.

Apple reportedly reducing memory chip orders from Samsung. Is this the end of the Apple-Samsung supply relationship?

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by 1 year ago
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In the aftermath of Apple’s big patent win against Samsung, industry observers have wondered whether it would affect the iPhone maker’s relationship with the South Korean company in terms of its supply contracts for components. In fact, our own Mike Andrici posited that Apple and Samsung are not about to divorce anytime soon, due to the mutually beneficial nature of the two companies’ supplier-client relationship. But recent rumors indicate that Apple may already be starting to look elsewhere.

UMC and TSMC to move to FinFET at 20nm

IBM Designates UMC to Make Its 20nm FinFET Chips
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by 1 year ago
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Intel went FinFET (or tri-gate transistors as they call them) at 22nm with Ivy Bridge, and now the #1 foundry, TSMC, and the #2 foundry, UMC, will also go to FinFET for the next gen 20 nm process. However, mass production of 20nm ARM chips will probably not happen until 2014, considering 28nm is barely here in 2012, and it usually takes 2 years for the new process technology to be ready. Apparently, the planar FinFET technology that these foundries intend to use is better suited for mobile SoC’s, like the ones from ARM, and it should bring a performance…

ARM and TSMC start working on FinFET process technology for the 64-bit ARMv8 architecture

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by 1 year ago
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TSMC is the largest foundry in the world, and it’s usually the main company that Nvidia, Qualcomm and others turn to when they want their chips manufactured. As an IP vendor, ARM has to work close with TSMC, much earlier than their IP clients, so they can prepare everything for the transition to the new chip architectures and the new process technologies. While we’re currently only on 28nm/32 nm, ARM has been working with TSMC and others for the next-gen 20nm/22nm process, and also for the 14nm/15nm process, which are still many years away. As chip makers create smaller and…

Qualcomm to increase supply of 28nm chips with help from UMC and Samsung

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by 2 years ago
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By now, we all know that Qualcomm has trouble satisfying the high demand for its S4 processors, which come integrated with LTE. The Snapdragon S4 is the only chip with this feature, so most manufacturers that want to launch their phones in the USA right now have no choice but to go with Qualcomm. That includes even Samsung and their Galaxy S3 phone, although Samsung makes its own chips usually. Qualcomm doesn’t want to leave so much money on the table, knowing that the longer the chip demand is higher than the supply, the more (potential) revenue they stand to…