The Week In Review: Manufacturing


Samsung Austin Semiconductor plans to invest more than $1 billion in its fab in Austin, Texas. Today, the fab continues to ramp up the company’s 14nm finFET technology. At the same time, Samsung is expanding its advanced finFET foundry process technology offerings with its fourth-generation 14nm process (14LPU) and its third-generation 10nm technology (10LPU). Graphcore is developing a so-... » read more

The Week In Review: Manufacturing


Chipmakers The wearables market has taken another hit. Intel has issued a safety recall for a smartwatch line from its Basis Science subsidiary. "We are issuing this safety recall of the Basis Peak watch because the watch can overheat, which could result in burns or blisters on the skin surface. It is important that you stop using your watch immediately and return it. Although we are stopping ... » read more

The Week In Review: Manufacturing


Chipmakers Through a joint venture with the government of Chongqing, GlobalFoundries will take over an existing 200mm fab in China. Then, GlobalFoundries plans to retrofit the facility and turn it into a 300mm fab. The foundry vendor is transferring its 180nm and 130nm processes to the China fab. Meanwhile, TSMC, UMC and others are also building fabs in China. Samsung Electronics has begu... » read more

The Week In Review: Manufacturing


Chipmakers Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (LLNL) has purchased a brain-inspired supercomputing platform for deep learning developed by IBM Research. LLNL will receive a 16-chip TrueNorth system from IBM. A single TrueNorth processor from IBM consists of 5.4 billion transistors wired together to create an array of 1 million digital neurons. The chip is fabricated based on a 28nm LPP pro... » read more

The Week In Review: Manufacturing


At one time, China’s Xiaomi was a high-flying smartphone vendor. The privately-held company had a market capitalization of $45 billion. But the bottom has fallen out of the company amid share losses. “By early 2015, it was clear that problems were emerging as growth ground to a halt and nothing that Xiaomi has done since has been able to re-start it. Xiaomi has ground to halt because there ... » read more

The Week In Review: Manufacturing


In a major and surprising move in the fab tool business, Lam Research has entered into a definitive agreement to acquire KLA-Tencor for about $10.6 billion in cash and stock. "Lam Research and KLA-Tencor have been working to tie together process and process control in an effort to expand process windows and better enable complex production steps, like multi-patterning. This acquisition form... » read more

The Week In Review: Manufacturing


Is the sky falling in the IC equipment market? Not yet, but watch out below. Semi capital spending is expected to reach $60.37 billion in 2015, down 1% from 2014, according to Pacific Crest Securities. “Although we trimmed 2016 capex three weeks ago, we are trimming some more. We now see semiconductor capex down 4% in 2016. However, we do not see capex falling off a cliff in 2016 (i.e., down ... » read more

The Week In Review: Manufacturing & Design


GT Advanced Technologies has entered into a multi-year supply agreement with Apple for sapphire materials. GT will own and operate its furnaces and related equipment to produce the sapphire materials at an Apple-owned facility in Arizona. GT expects to employ more than 700 people in the facility. Apple will provide GT with a prepayment of about $578 million. “We believe Apple likely has signi... » read more

The Week In Review: Manufacturing & Design


Silver surfers represent a more important technology market than “Generation X” and “Generation Y,” according to research from Gartner. Silver surfers are people in middle age or approaching old age. Although most technologists fail to recognize this fact, they are very interested in using technology and also have the time and the resources to pursue their interests, according to Gartne... » read more

The Week In Review: Sept. 23


By Mark LaPedus For some time, Apple’s iPhones have incorporated a separate RF switch and diversity switch from Peregrine Semiconductor (PSMI). The switches are based on a silicon-on-insulator (SOI) variant called silicon-on-sapphire (SOS). Murata takes Peregrine’s RF switches and integrates them into a module. Doug Freedman, an analyst with RBC Capital, said Apple is no longer using PSMI... » read more

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