Japan was one of the leaders in the semiconductor industry a couple of decades ago, but over time it has long lost its leading position in the relevant market.To remedy the situation, Japanese tech giants including Sony and NEC will spend about $500 million on a new company designed to restore Japan's leading role in microchip manufacturing.Image source: Moughit Fawzi/unsplash.com \"Semiconductors should be a critical component in the development of new advanced technologies like AI, digital industries and healthcare,\" Economy, Trade and Industry Minister Yasutoshi Nishimura said during a recent briefing.According to the Nikkei Asian Review, Rapidus, which is being established, will develop a new generation of semiconductors that will use sub-2nm process technology.Contract manufacturing could start around 2030.As the trade war between the U.S.and China picks up steam and Washington has limited China's access to semiconductor technology, Japan is rushing to revive its semiconductor industry, which has stagnated in recent years, to provide its own automakers and IT companies with advanced solutions in the field.Japan does not rule out that China will try to take Taiwan under its control, which is currently the largest center for the production of advanced semiconductors.Under the new strategy, Japan will encourage foreign semiconductor manufacturers to build factories in the country, in particular, funds of over $2.7 billion to build a plant in Kumamoto prefecture will be allocated to TSMC - the plant will supply semiconductors to Sony and car parts manufacturer Denso Corp.In July Japan pledged $635.5 million in subsidies to help manufacturers The funds will also be allocated to U.S.Micron Technology to expand production in Hiroshima.Image source: Jezael Melgoza/unsplash.comThe establishment of the new company signals the beginning of a new phase of Japan's semiconductor strategy.In addition, the country continues to deepen technological cooperation in the relevant field with the U.S.- in July, Japan and the United States agreed to establish a joint research center for the development of fast and energy-efficient semiconductors to 2 nm.The center is expected to be ready by the end of this year.Japan has a lot of catching up to do.The country's most advanced production lines are capable of producing 40-nm chips - it has not had the opportunity to invest in the industry comparable to rival states, which those states have been actively spending on industry development since the 2010s.Rapidus has already secured funds from the Organization for the Development of New Energy and Industrial Technology, Japan's national research center.Businesses like Toyota, Nippon Telegraph and Telephone Corp, as well as Kioxia Holdings, for example, are also investing in the company.
Chip imports to China fell by more than 13% from January to October, according to Chinese customs, as the world's largest semiconductor market is affected by the growing trade standoff between the US and the Middle Kingdom as well as a general economic slowdown.Source image: TSMSZThe first 10 months of the year, China imported 458 billion integrated circuits, which is 13.2% less than the 527.9 billion chips imported into the country in the same period last year.In October the decline in imports markedly accelerated - during the first 9 months of decline was an average of only 12.8%.Decrease in supply volumes is also due to the fact that in 2021 the import of integrated circuits took off - during the first 10 months of growth then was 21.2% year-on-year, so it is difficult to keep up with these figures now.But despite the decline in the volume of imports, higher prices for chips led to an increase in the value of supplies during this period by 1.3%, leaving $351.2 billion.In general, chips have long been a major item of imports to China, at one time by the value of purchases such imports overtook crude oil and consumer goods.Nevertheless, it began to decline at the beginning of this year, the first year-on-year decline since 2020.The drop in imports in October was 13.7% (to 41.1 billion) compared to October 2021.By comparison, 47.6 billion chips were imported in September.The accelerated decline in purchases comes amid Washington's strengthening of export controls and coincides with a global decline in demand for semiconductors as a whole.Source image: TSMC7 October, the Bureau of Industry and Security - a unit of the U.S.Department of Commerce announced a series of measures to control technology exports to China aimed at weakening the Chinese high-performance semiconductor sector - not only exports to the Middle Kingdom chips themselves, but also equipment for their manufacture, special permits for the production of semiconductors, and a number of other measures.At the same time, the value of sold year-on-year increased by 6.2%.The problem may be partly related to the outbreak of coronavirus in the country - due to sanitary restrictions, the ability to fulfill orders was also affected.
Taiwan's TSMC is preparing to implement another project with multi-billion dollar investments - the company intends to expand the chip factory under construction in Arizona (USA).In the coming months, the chipmaker plans to announce the construction of an advanced factory north of Phoenix, next to the already under construction facilities that were announced in 2020.The volume of investments, according to some reports, will be the same as 2 years ago - $ 12 billion.Image source: Maxence Pira/unsplash.comThe company began to actively develop chip production in the U.S.after Washington has promised semiconductor manufacturers all sorts of grants and incentives for the construction of enterprises on American soil.Future plant TSMC will produce chips in accordance with the 3-nm process, one of the most advanced to date.In TSMC said that the official ceremony of installation of the first batch of equipment for the manufacture of chips at the first plant in Arizona will be held in December - the beginning of construction was announced two years ago and the beginning of production is scheduled for 2024.While previously the company was going to produce 5-nm chips in Arizona, now we are talking about more advanced 4-nm variants.Mass production should begin in 2024.The timing of commissioning of the second plant is still unknown.The expansion indirectly indicates the manufacturers' optimism about the demand for semiconductors in the long term, even against the backdrop of disappointing market indicators for the current year.Demand for some chips collapsed after two years of rapid growth during the pandemic, during which demand for computer hardware and electronics skyrocketed.Many companies, including TSMC, had to go into savings mode and cut capital spending in the short term.Despite the downturn in the industry, semiconductor company executives still expect that in the next decade, global sales will exceed $1 trillion, so intensive investment in manufacturing infrastructure continues, especially since such plans in recent years are actively supported by the United States and Europe, hoping to move the \"center of power\" semiconductor industry from Asia.Intel and Micron are also trying to save money in the short term, while investing heavily in future projects based on strong demand.This year, the U.S.has distributed grants for chip production in the amount of $39 billion; the funds themselves will be allocated from next year.In addition, it also provides tax incentives for equipment for the production of semiconductors.Europe also intends to increase its production share in the global market of semiconductors up to 20% by 2030.Large plants typically take several years to build and equip, so companies must make investment decisions in advance.Image source: Robert Murray/unsplash.comThe enormous subsidies in the US and Europe for chip production are a reflection of political leaders realizing their critical importance in the military and civilian sectors.The active development of the relevant industry in China has caused deep concern in the West, after which the U.S.stopped promoting the idea of freedom of market relations and imposed tough sanctions on Chinese companies, which include a ban on both exports to the country of advanced chips and equipment for their production.In addition, the United States and its allies are concerned that the most advanced technologies of semiconductors are concentrated in Taiwan, an island that China considers part of its territory.It is known that in addition to the U.S., TSMC is considering expanding production in Japan and allows the construction of a multibillion-dollar plant in Singapore.
Experts explained why electronics manufacturers are \"swimming\" in chips, while automakers suffer from chip shortages
Recently, news about a total chip shortage has been replaced by information about a mitigation of the situation.What's more, some reports suggest that TSMC is asking its employees to take a leave of absence as computer makers have noticeably reduced orders, and orders from smartphone makers have declined even further, a trend that will continue into 2023.Meanwhile, while some manufacturers are not experiencing any shortage of semiconductors, many companies are still suffering from acute shortages.Image source: МicronAs Forbes reports, while TSMC's leading customers - Apple, AMD, Intel, MediaTek, NVIDIA, and Qualcomm are constantly developing more and more advanced processors, they are currently very \"conservative\" about sales forecasts and, therefore, production orders.In other words, the leading electronics component vendors do not need many chips yet.This is not surprising, because in this sector demand is largely determined by demand for PCs, which, according to Gartner, in April 2021 rose to record levels, sales of the top six PC manufacturers grew at a double-digit percentage rate, and for some time, even triple-digit sales of Chromebooks.This trend could not last forever, and figures have already appeared on the sale of certain models of Chromebooks for literally $79 (in the US) - even components for them cost more, but the market is already crowded, and demand is satisfied for almost years to come.At the same time for the release of new models manufacturers have to free up their warehouses from old and expect high demand for components in this segment in the foreseeable future is not necessary.For example, in its latest earnings report Micron Tecnology reported that demand in the calendar year 2022 will on average be lower than supply, which will lead to a build-up of large stocks in the warehouses of suppliers.Scarcity typically initiates massive investments in building new capacity and mastering new process technologies, resulting in the occasional oversupply crisis.Surplus is observed in many industries-but not in all.In particular, there is no abundance on the market of chips for cars.The point is that most of the semiconductors for cars are produced according to the so-called \"mature\" process technologies, and most of the demand is for 90-nm semiconductors.These were considered the most advanced solution around 2002, 20 years ago.Nevertheless, they are quite in demand, since many components simply do not need ultra-modern technology, and the process of transition to it is costly and long.Image source: BMWFactories continue to use the old tools for production and, since this segment is not the most profitable, for most manufacturers there was no need to invest in new capacity.Such semiconductors weren't quite enough already by the beginning of the pandemic, and 2020 recorded about an eight-week period in which most auto factories had to partially or completely suspend operations due to sanitary restrictions, after which they withdrew their semiconductor orders.Meanwhile, explosive growth in other sectors requiring chips has put \"obsolete\" production capacity to full use, and as Forbes reports, when automakers tried to restart orders, delivery times for them catast
The day before the Taiwanese media reported that TSMC, the largest contract manufacturer of semiconductor components in the world, had already decided on the location for its most advanced facility, which will master the 1N technology production in a few years.As explained by TSMC representatives, no decisions have been made yet.Image source: TSMC According to Focus Taiwan, the original publication of the Commercial Times, citing an anonymous source, mentioned the intention of TSMC to place the new venture in the technology park Xinzhu in northwestern Taiwan.According to official reports, TSMC is undecided on the site and is still in the process of finding a suitable location on the island.As soon as the choice is made, the company promises to make the appropriate announcement.Deputy director of the technology park Xinzhu not commented on rumors about the plans of TSMC, but explained that the resident companies can choose the site in the third area of the park for the construction of production facilities, because the first place is all taken, and the second reserved for recreational areas.It is expected that the company will begin mass production of 3-nm products in the current quarter, and next year revenue from their sales will be as follows Mass production of 2-nm products TSMC will begin in 2025.The company's management did not speak about terms of mastering more advanced lithography at the last quarterly report conference, but in May there was already information about TSMC's readiness to start development of 1.4nm process.
Intel Corp.'s third-quarter revenue fell 15% to $15.3 billion, in full compliance with its management's projections.By the middle of the decade, Intel hopes to cut annual expenses by $8-10 billion, with savings reaching $3 billion as early as next year.According to the head of the company, staff cuts will not be a significant factor in savings, although they will start already in the current quarter.Image source: Intel Net income at Intel in the past quarter fell by 59% from $5.9 to $2.4 billion using Non-GAAP method and operating profit margin fell from 31.8 to 10.8 %.Profit margin fell from 58.3% to 45.9% year over year.At the same time, the company managed to increase spending on research and development by 12% to $5.4 billion.Intel was forced to end the quarter with operating losses, but due to the tax refunds it showed a net profit.The period ended with an operating loss of $175 million, but a net profit of $1.02 billion.In the client computing area, which is most dependent on PC market conditions, Intel's revenues fell 17% year over year to $8.1 billion, but grew sequentially by 6% due to an increase in average selling price.Intel expects PC sales to dip 15 to 19 percent this year, primarily in the consumer and education sectors, as well as inventory adjustments in the OEM segment, but year-over-year sales should remain above pre-pandemic levels for the foreseeable future.At the end of next year, PC sales should either remain at current levels or decline slightly.According to the Intel representatives, from 270 to 295 million computers will be sold next year.The head of the corporation even said that Intel was able to significantly strengthen its position in the PC segment in the third quarter.Image source: IntelIn the server segment last quarter, revenue at Intel dropped by an impressive 27% to $4.2 billion, but in the reporting documents the company proudly announced that it had started production of those models of processors Sapphire Rapids family, which were aimed at mass consumption, and also expects to slightly increase its market share in this segment by the end of the year.In the past quarter, Intel's server revenue was undermined by weak demand in the Chinese corporate sector.Image source: IntelThe immediate issue of the upcoming staff reductions at the quarterly event Intel management spoke reluctantly, only noting its inevitability.Intel's freelancers and contractors will be the first to suffer, they will feel Intel's desire to save money as early as this quarter.Marketing and advertising costs will be cut.Quantitative figures for staff reductions are not specified, but CFO Davis Zinsner let it slip that they will be significant.CEO Patrick Gelsinger added that production costs would be prioritized over payroll in the search for cost savings.By early October, the company had 131,500 employees.According to Intel's management, the company is on track to implement a plan to master five new process technologies in four years.There were no delays in learning Intel 4 and Intel 3 technologies, the first prototypes of chips made with the Intel 20A and Intel 18A technologies were already running in the company's labs, and this also applies to products for a large third-party customer - at least the digital design of the respective product is ready and the first working samples exist.In the customer segment, the company is going to introduce Meteor Lake processors (Intel 4) next year, at the same time Emerald Rapids servers will appear.On schedule, the company is preparing to launch server processors in 2024.The Meteor Lake series stepping design should be completed this quarter, and Intel's server segment managed to get the first Intel 3 Granite Rapids processor components last quarter, systems based on their samples are already working in Intel labs.For the first time, the company will use ultra-hard ultraviolet (EUV) lithography as part of its Intel 4 and Intel 3 processors.This will endow the respective products with breakthrough performance in terms of performance per watt of power consumption and density, according to Intel.Image source: IntelSome of Intel's business areas showed positive revenue growth in the third quarter.Among them were networking and edge computing solutions, which grew revenue 14% to $2.3 billion and kept operating income at $75 million, despite an 85% decline from the same period last year.
In late September, the British holding Arm appointed a new CFO and added two members to the board of directors, which can be taken as a sign of preparation for a public offering, but the changes did not stop there.The division that developed solutions for the automotive industry has been separated, and there was rotation among the heads of all major divisions.Source image: Getty ImagesAbout this on the pages of the corporate blog said Arm CEO Rene Haas.According to him, so far the solutions for the automotive industry and the Internet of Things have been developed by one unit, but progress in both areas pushes the company to separate them.In total, Arm will now have four main areas of activity: automotive, customer (responsible for technology for the consumer market), infrastructure and the Internet of Things.From the previously unified division of automotive solutions and the Internet of Things is Dipti Vachani (Dipti Vachani), he will now oversee the automotive business Arm in the post of senior vice president.Paul Williamson, who previously headed the customer division, will move to head the IoT business, also taking the position of senior vice president.The client business will be led by Chris Bergey, who was previously in charge of Arm's infrastructure solutions.Finally, Mohamed Awad, who held the top IoT position, will head the infrastructure business, also as senior vice president.According to the CEO, \"the change is critical to our success,\" which is why management sees this shift as the key to Arm's success.
Canon will challenge ASML - the company will establish production of machines for chip production with advanced lithography, but without EUV
Japanese Canon is developing a new generation of lithographic equipment for semiconductor production, able to compete with the products of Dutch ASML, which is almost a monopolist in the market of such solutions.The new plant in Japan will also be a response to competitors' investments in the related area in the United States, South Korea and Taiwan.Image source: CaponThe investment is expected to total $345 million, including construction costs and installation of production equipment.The plant will start production in the spring of 2025.As a result, the company will double its production capacity in this niche.Not only does the company intend to expand production, but it is also betting on new technology that will make it possible to produce next-generation semiconductors at low prices.Today it makes lithographic equipment in two factories in Japan which is used to produce chips for car control systems, for example.The new plant will be built on a 70,000 m2 plot of land on the site of an existing facility.This will be Canon's first new lithographic production facility built in 21 years, with construction starting in 2023.In 2022, lithographic equipment sales are expected to grow 29 percent year-over-year to 180 machines - a fourfold increase from ten years ago.The new plant will help meet growing demand.According to World Semiconductor Trade Statistics, last year the global semiconductor market exceeded $500 billion for the first time in history.The industry expects it to exceed $1 trillion in 2030.Today, Canon controls 30% of the global lithographic equipment market by volume, second only to ASML, which accounts for 60%.Intel and Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co.(TSMC) announced plans to build their own new plants in the U.S.and other countries.The company has also developed next-generation technology called nanoimprint lithography.It makes it possible to produce cutting-edge microchips at a lower cost than existing lithographic equipment.The process is simplified thanks to a technique that allows you to literally \"stamp\" the patterns of integrated circuits, which can significantly reduce production costs - the development of technology involved Japanese Kioxia and Dai Nippon Printing.Today, the most indispensable technology using EUV lithography to form circuits at the nanometer level.The only source of such technology today is the Dutch ASML.Nevertheless, such equipment is expensive, costing about $138 million per machine and consuming a lot of energy.If nanoprinting lithography reaches the stage of practical commercial use, Canon expects to reduce the cost of lithography by up to 40% and energy consumption by up to 90% compared to EUV.This will shake the dominance of ASML in the market.
AMD will unveil Radeon RX 7000 graphics cards on the latest RDNA 3 architecture graphics processors tonight. The start of the presentation,...