The Week In Review: Manufacturing

Chipmakers Samsung has rolled out the Samsung Family Hub Refrigerator, an appliance that changes the landscape in the refrigerator market. The refrigerator comes with a 21.5-inch LCD touchscreen, which serves as the digital command center and connects to a smartphone. It enables consumers to view inside the fridge with a smartphone while grocery shopping. It can access music or television cont... » 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

Packaging Wars Ahead

There has been much talk about semiconductor industry consolidation, but the shift into advanced packaging could have more far-reaching effects than all the mega-deals so far. Packaging is big business. Yole Développement has pinned the market at $30 billion, but that's only a thin slice of the pie that's in play. Companies that win the packaging deals also have a good shot of winning the m... » read more

Manufacturing Bits: Sept. 1

Free-electron laser EUV consortium Extreme ultraviolet (EUV) lithography is delayed. Chipmakers hope to insert EUV at the 7nm node, but that’s not a given. As before, the big problem is the EUV light source. So far, the source can’t generate enough power to enable the required throughput for EUV in high-volume production. ASML’s current EUV source is operating at 80 Watts, up from 10 ... » read more

Getting Paid More

Consolidation is a regular news item in the semiconductor industry, and has been for years, but most of those deals have been relatively small. What's changing is the amount of consolidation involving big companies, fueled partly by a massive M&A fund in China, partly by an arms race in preparation for the IoE, and partly by the kind of thinking that if other companies are doing it, it's dan... » read more

The Week In Review: Design/IoT

Summit Research reports on the proposed buyout of Micron by China's Tsinghua Unigroup. New York Senator Chuck Schumer wrote a letter urging the United States to block any potential sale of the Boise memory-chip maker to the group. Summit states the Tsinghua investment is more likely to be a stake in Micron that specifically forbids certain IP to be made available in order to protect national se... » read more

The Next Big Things

Progress in electronics has always been about combining more functions into devices and making access to information more convenient. This is what drove the PC revolution in the 1980s, when centralized data was made available on desktops, and it's what drove the notebook PC revolution in the 1990s as computers became untethered from the desktop, as long as you could find an Ethernet connecti... » read more

The Week In Review: Manufacturing

Semicon West is always a busy week. Typically, there are a plethora of events going on during the week. It’s also a good week to get a pulse on the industry. The good news: Innovation is alive and well. Bad news: Intel cut its CapEx. And tool makers are in the midst of a lull right now, with a cloudy outlook projected for 2016. Some even see a dreaded downturn next year. Pacific Crest Secu... » read more

Manufacturing Bits: April 7

Liquid metal for Terminator robots The Chinese Academy of Sciences and Tsinghua University have devised a robot-like, self-fueled liquid metal mollusk. The liquid metal alloy within the system can move by itself and change form like the shape-shifting T-1000 robot in the movie Terminator 2: Judgment Day. The system consists of a liquid metal motor. The liquid metal is a mix of gallium, i... » read more

Manufacturing Bits: Sept. 9

Whispering sensors Inspired by a whispering technology from a famous cathedral, Washington University in St. Louis and Tsinghua University in China have developed a new sensor that can detect and count nanoparticles down to 10nm and perhaps below. Researchers have devised a Raman microlaser sensor in a silicon dioxide chip. The microsensor is called a whispering gallery mode resonator (WGMR... » read more