The Week In Review: Manufacturing

Trade President Trump this week announced his decisions on the actions the administration will take in response to China’s alleged unfair trade practices covered in the USTR Section 301 investigation of “China’s Acts, Policies, and Practices Related to Technology Transfer, Intellectual Property, and Innovation.” Trump has proposed import tariffs that amount to about $60 billion on pro... » read more

The Bumpy Road To 5G

5G is coming, but not everywhere, not all at once, and not the fastest version of this technology right away. In fact, the probable scenario is that 5G will be rolled out first in densely populated urban areas, starting in 2020 or 2021, with increasingly widespread adoption over the next decade after that. But 5G is unlikely to ever completely replace 4G LTE, just as a smart phone today roll... » read more

Finding Faulty Auto Chips

The next wave of automotive chips for assisted and autonomous driving is fueling the development of new approaches in a critical field called outlier detection. KLA-Tencor, Optimal+, as well as Mentor, a Siemens Business, and others are entering or expanding their efforts in the outlier detection market or related fields. Used in various industries for several years, outlier detection is one... » read more

Will China Succeed In Memory?

China's fledging memory makers are expected to reach a major milestone and move into initial production this year, although vendors are already running into various roadblocks. China's domestic vendors are focusing on two markets, 3D NAND and DRAM. In both cases local vendors are either behind in technology, struggling to develop these products, or both. And one vendor recently was hit with ... » read more

Transistor Options Beyond 3nm

Despite a slowdown in chip scaling amid soaring costs, the industry continues to search for a new transistor type 5 to 10 years out—particularly for the 2nm and 1nm nodes. Specifically, the industry is pinpointing and narrowing down the transistor options for the next major nodes after 3nm. Those two nodes, called 2.5nm and 1.5nm, are slated to appear in 2027 and 2030, respectively, accord... » read more

The Week In Review: Manufacturing

Chipmakers China has struck again, as the nation continues to acquire semiconductor technology. In December, Silicon Labs announced plans to acquire Sigma Designs for $282 million. The deal involves Sigma’s Z-Wave chip business. Now, Sigma Designs has sold its connectivity chip business unit to Integrated Silicon Solution Inc. (ISSI). In 2015, a Chinese consortium of investors led by Uph... » read more

Cheaper Packaging Options Ahead

Lower-cost packaging options and interconnects are either under development or just being commercialized, all of which could have a significant impact on the economics of advanced packaging. By far, the most cited reason why companies don't adopt advanced [getkc id="27" kc_name="packaging"] is cost. Currently, silicon [getkc id="204" kc_name="interposers"] add about $30 to the price of a med... » read more

Driving By Ethernet

The race to add more sophisticated and safety-critical electronics into cars is forcing carmakers to revisit the communications systems within increasingly electrified and connected vehicles. Until very recently, communication between components within a vehicle was simplistic, and communication between vehicles was non-existent. All of that is changing quickly. Rapid and secure communicatio... » read more

The Week In Review: Manufacturing

Chipmakers The IC industry continues to consolidate. For example, Qualcomm has a proposed plan to buy NXP. And then, Broadcom wants to buy Qualcomm. Who is next? In a research note, RBC Capital Markets analyst Mitch Steves said: “According to Bloomberg, Microsemi is exploring a sale and we think logical acquirers could include Skyworks. We continue to view Microsemi as a notable strategic as... » read more

Nodes Vs. Nodelets

Foundries are flooding the market with new nodes and different process options at existing nodes, spreading confusion and creating a variety of challenges for chipmakers. There are full-node processes, such as 10nm and 7nm, with 5nm and 3nm in R&D. But there also is an increasing number of half-nodes or "node-lets" being introduced, including 12nm, 11nm, 8nm, 6nm and 4nm. Node-lets ar... » read more

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