The Week In Review: Manufacturing


Fab tools and test Four former employees at Applied Materials were charged by the U.S. for allegedly trying to steal the company’s own fab tool technology designs, according to a report from Bloomberg and others. The former employees were allegedly trying to sell the technology to a Chinese startup that would compete against Applied, according to the report. The former employees--Liang C... » read more

The Week In Review: Manufacturing


Chipmakers The 2017 top-ten rankings of foundries remain the same as last year, according to TrendForce. TSMC, GlobalFoundries and United Microelectronics Corp. (UMC) rank first, second, and third, respectively, in terms of projected sales in 2017, according to TrendForce. TSMC has a dominant market share of 55.9%. In the rankings, Samsung is in fourth place, followed in order by SMIC, TowerJa... » read more

Here Comes High-Res Car Radar


A dozen or so startups are developing high-resolution radar chips that use various modulation schemes and processes, such as CMOS, FD-SOI and even metamaterials. In theory, high-resolution radar could boost the capabilities of today’s radar for cars, as well as eliminate the need for a separate LiDAR system. But the technology is still in the research stage and has yet to be proven commerc... » read more

The Week In Review: Manufacturing


Market research For some time, DRAM shortages have plagued the market. Today, the situation remains the same. DRAMs are seeing strong demand. But yet, vendors are not adding any capacity. “Strained DRAM supply was even more evident during the third quarter as limited production capacity and limited technological progress for the memory industry encountered robust demand from data centers in ... » read more

The Week In Review: Design


Tools Aldec released the latest version of its Riviera-PRO verification platform, adding QEMU Bridge to enable hardware/software co-simulation of designs intended to run on SoC FPGAs. Other features include improved performance when using code containing many inline randomized calls and up to 29% faster simulation speed of UVM. Pulsic added new features to its Unity Bus Planner for planning... » read more

Variation Spreads At 10/7nm


Variation between different manufacturing equipment is becoming increasingly troublesome as chipmakers push to 10/7nm and beyond. Process variation is a well-known phenomenon at advanced nodes. But some of that is actually due to variations in equipment—sometimes the exact same model from the same vendor. Normally this would fall well below the radar of the semiconductor industry. But as t... » read more

The Week In Review: Manufacturing


Chipmakers Bloomberg has reported that Broadcom is in talks to acquire Qualcomm for $70 per share or about $90 billion. Qualcomm is attempting to acquire NXP, but Broadcom has its sights on Qualcomm, not NXP. “We think AVGO would want to acquire QCOM assets not NXP,” said Amit Daryanani, an analyst with RBC. Samsung continues to reshuffle its management amid a plethora of changes at t... » read more

The Week In Review: Manufacturing


Chipmakers At this week’s International Wafer-Level Packaging Conference (IWLPC), Samsung disclosed details about its efforts in the panel-level fan-out market. Samsung as well as ASE, Nepes and others are developing a next-generation fan-out technology using a panel-level format. In panel-level fan-out packaging, you can put more die on a panel as compared to a traditional round wafer, w... » read more

Radar Versus LiDAR


Demand is picking up for vision, radar and LiDAR sensors that enable assisted and autonomous driving capabilities in cars, but carmakers are now pushing for some new and demanding requirements from suppliers. The automotive market always has been tough on suppliers. OEMs want smaller, faster and cheaper devices at the same or improved safety levels for both advanced driver-assistance systems... » read more

MEMS Market Shifting


The MEMS sector is beginning to look more promising, bolstered by new end-market demand and different packaging options that require more advanced engineering, processes and new materials. All of this points to higher selling prices, which are long overdue in this space. For years, the market for microelectromechanical systems was populated by too many companies vying for too few opportunit... » read more

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