Regaining The Edge In U.S. Chip Manufacturing


The United States is developing new strategies to prevent it from falling further behind Korea, Taiwan, and perhaps even China in semiconductor manufacturing, as trade tensions and national security concerns continue to grow. For years, the U.S. has been a leader in the development of new chip products like GPUs and microprocessors. But from a chip manufacturing standpoint, the U.S. is losin... » read more

Recovery In Flat-Panel Display Biz


The flat-panel display market is starting to recover after a period of oversupply and lackluster growth, fueled by new technologies as well as more people working from home. The flat-panel display market is complex. Several different technologies are at play, such as liquid-crystal displays (LCDs) for TV screens and other products, as well as organic light-emitting diodes (OLEDs) for smartph... » read more

Recent Earthquakes Highlight Risk To Semiconductor Manufacturing Sites


On July 4, 2019, southern California experienced a 6.4 magnitude earthquake followed by a 7.1 earthquake the next day. Both earthquakes occurred near the town of Ridgecrest, but they were not related to the San Andreas fault, an 800-mile fault zone in California where two tectonic plates meet. The San Andreas fault is generally considered to be where “the big one” could occur in California,... » read more

Week in Review: IoT, Security, Auto


Internet of Things Paris-based Parrot Drones and five other companies were selected by the Pentagon’s Defense Innovation Unit and the U.S. Army to adapt off-the-shelf commercial drones for combat applications as part of the Army’s Short Range Reconnaissance program. SRR seeks to develop unmanned aerial vehicles that have a flight time of 30 minutes, a range of three kilometers (nearly two ... » read more

Whither Xcerra?


Trade tensions between the People’s Republic of China and the Trump Administration could sink a big transaction in the automatic test equipment business. Xcerra, a supplier of semiconductor test systems, board testers, and electronic interconnects, announced in April that it had accepted an offer from Unic Capital Management, an affiliate of Sino IC Capital, to acquire the company for $10.... » read more

When A Lot May Not Be Enough


For the last couple of months my son has been trying to save for a Nintendo Switch. The emphasis here is on “trying to.” The problem is that whenever he amasses enough money to buy something else, he tends to spend the money on a cheaper toy like a new Lego Dimensions figure. I guess that delayed gratification isn’t really a strength of my son. His assumption is that the best way to colle... » read more

Fab Spending Hits New High


The latest update to the World Fab Forecast report, published on May 31, 2017 by SEMI, reveals record spending for fab construction and fab equipment. Korea, Taiwan, and China all see large investments, and spending in Europe has also increased significantly. In 2017, over US$49 billion will be spent on equipment alone, a historic record for the semiconductor industry. Spending on new fab cons... » read more

5 Takeaways From Semicon


As usual, the recent Semicon West trade show was a busy, if not an overwhelming, event. The event, which took place in San Francisco in early July, featured presentations on the usual subjects in the semiconductor and IC-equipment sectors. There were sessions on 200mm, next-generation processes, transistors, lithography, MEMS and many others. In no particular order, here are my five ta... » read more

Foundry Capacity Investment Led By Taiwan And China


The era of every company building a captive fab for next-generation products is ancient history, as foundries throughout the world provide leading-edge technology and flexible capacity in a timely and cost-effective manner. In today’s mobile-driven ecosystem, faster product development cycles and time-to-market have become the norm for the industry. Now, this trend is even spreading to the co... » read more

The Week In Review: IoT


Taiwan’s annual Computex trade show, celebrating its 35th anniversary this year, opened this week, and the Internet of Things is among the focus areas of the exhibition. Tsai Ing-wen, the new president of Taiwan, said at the opening ceremony, “The IoT era is coming strong. Taiwan must focus on the integration of hardware and software along with low-volume, high-variety manufacturing capabil... » read more

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