China: Fab Boom or Bust?


China’s semiconductor industry continues to expand at a frenetic pace. At present there are nearly two dozen new fab projects in China. Whether all these fab projects get off the ground is not entirely clear because the dynamics in China remain fluid. What is clear is the motivation behind this building frenzy—China is trying to reduce its huge trade imbalance in ICs. The country continu... » read more

The Week In Review: Manufacturing


SPIE news At this week’s SPIE Advanced Lithography conference, the industry paid close attention to the progress of extreme ultraviolet (EUV) lithography. Here’s the general report card: EUV is making noticeable progress, but there are still some challenges ahead, such as the power source, resists and pellicles. Several issues need to be resolved before chipmakers can put EUV into mass... » read more

The Week In Review: Manufacturing


Chipmakers IC Insights has released its rankings of the top 10 pure-play foundries in 2016. TSMC was the largest foundry in terms of sales, followed by GlobalFoundries, UMC, and SMIC, according to IC Insights. TSMC held a 59% share in 2016. According to IC Insights, the three top-10 pure-play foundry companies that displayed the highest growth rates in 2016 were X-Fab (54%), SMIC (31%) and To... » read more

The Week In Review: Manufacturing


Numbers IC Insights predicts TowerJazz and SMIC sales will jump this year, with the total pure-play foundry revenue forecast to grow 9%. That compares with 6% growth last year. TSMC is expected to shrink slightly to 58% market share, with GlobalFoundries staying flat at 11%. UMC will remain in third place in the rankings, followed by SMIC and TowerJazz. SEMI’s book-to-bill ratio jumped to... » read more

The Week In Review: Design


Tools Synopsys updated its static timing analysis tool to use smart engineering change order (ECO) technology, which the company says reduces memory requirements by 5X and speeds runtime by 2X. The release also allows more scenarios on a single server, or flexible distribution to take advantage of customers' private compute clouds. IP Synopsys released MIPI display and camera interface... » read more

Waiting For 5G Technology


For some time, carriers, equipment OEMs and chipmakers have been gearing up for the next-generation wireless standard called 5th generation mobile networks, or 5G. 5G is the follow-on to the current wireless standard known as 4G, or long-term evolution (LTE). It will enable data transmission rates of more than 10Gbps, or 100 times the throughput of LTE. But the big question is whether 5G wil... » read more

Foundries Expand Their Scope


By Ed Sperling & Mark LaPedus Major foundries are stepping up their offerings across a wide swath of technology nodes, specialty processes and advanced packaging—a recognition that end markets are fragmenting and that the path forward includes a mix of new and established processes. As the smart phone market flattens, there is no single "next big thing" to drive volume at the most ... » read more

The Week In Review: Design/IoT


EDA & IP EDA revenues increased 7.1% for Q3 2015, according to the EDA Consortium, upping the number to $1957.5 million, compared to $1828.1 million in Q3 2014. The four-quarters moving average also jumped by 8.8%. IC Physical Design & Verification saw the biggest gains, with a 14% increase compared to Q3 2014 and $407.9 million in revenue for the quarter. IP was runner up, with $652... » read more

The Week In Review: Manufacturing


Samsung plans to make a major entry into the drone market, according to reports. “Samsung is not alone in focusing on the drone market,” said Will Strauss, president of Forward Concepts, in a research note. “At CES next month in Las Vegas, one can expect new products from drone market leader DJI, but dozens of new drone models from Parrot and many other companies. Even GoPro chip maker A... » read more

Foundries Face Challenges in 2016


Generally, 2015 has been a challenging year in the foundry business. For one thing, the foundry industry will register modest growth in 2015. In addition, the foundry customer base is consolidating. And on the leading edge, foundries took longer than expected to ramp up their 16nm/14nm finFET processes. So, after an eventful year in 2015, what’s in store for the foundry business in 2016? I... » read more

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