The Week In Review: Manufacturing

GF expands in RF; Wolfspeed prowls; MagnaChip takeover; Intel goes quantum.

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GlobalFoundries has partnered with Catena, a supplier of radio frequency (RF) communication IPs, to offer complete Wi-Fi and Bluetooth solutions for system-on-chip (SoC) designers targeting mobile, Internet-of-Things (IoT), RF connectivity markets. In addition, GlobalFoundries and QEOS are partnering to co-develop the industry’s first mmW CMOS platform.

Samsung Electronics said that its 2015 SUHD and UHD TVs will be the first on the market capable of supporting the new HDMI 2.0a specification.

SEMI announced the appointment of Laith Altimime as president of SEMI Europe, effective Oct. 1, 2015. Altimime will report to SEMI’s CEO, Denny McGuirk, and will lead SEMI’s activities in Europe and Middle East and North Africa (MENA).

In May, Cree said it plans to spin-out its power and RF chip unit into a separate and standalone company. The name of the new company? Wolfspeed is the new name for the power and RF spin-off of Cree.

Investment firm Pleasant Lake Partners launched an unsolicited offer to acquire MagnaChip Semiconductor, according to a filing with the U.S. Securities Exchange Commission (SEC). The deal could be worth around $346 million, according to reports. Korea’s MagnaChip, a foundry and IDM, has been rocked by accounting issues.

Intel announced a 10-year collaborative relationship with the Delft University of Technology and TNO, the Dutch Organization for Applied Research, to accelerate advancements in quantum computing. Intel will invest $50 million and will provide engineering resources both on-site and at Intel.

A soap opera is transpiring in OSAT land. Chip-packaging giant Advanced Semiconductor Engineering (ASE) recently launched an unsolicited bid to acquire a 25% stake in Siliconware Precision Electronics (SPIL). Then, to fend off the offer, SPIL turned to Hon Hai Precision, better known as Foxconn. Foxconn plans to take a 21.24% stake in SPIL. Still, ASE is moving forward with its tender offer for SPIL.

TowerJazz and TowerJazz Panasonic Semiconductor Co. (TPSCo) announced breakthrough RF technology for next-generation 4G LTE smartphones and IoT devices. TowerJazz and its majority owned subsidiary, TPSCo, have developed a new 300mm RF SOI process that can reduce losses in an RF switch by as much as 30% relative to current technology, improving battery life and boosting data rates. The technology achieves a record Ron-Coff figure of merit of sub-90fs and is now being sampled to a lead customer.