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Taiwan to get big Hitachi chip contracts

Electronics company outsources chip production

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Hitachi is to outsource around 10 per cent of its chip production to companies in Taiwan, it announced today. Starting from April, its next financial year, the manufacturer will farm out production to two Taiwanese companies - UMC (United Microelectronics Corp) and Episil Technologies, according to today's Dow Jones. This will be the first outsourcing of chip production to Taiwan, said Hitachi. The Japanese giant will receive application specific integrated circuits from UMC Group, and transistors from Episil. It said it had decided on the outsourcing to conserve resources to pump into more advanced, higher value products. In conjunction with ST Microelectronics, Hitachi is also expected to announce the completion of the latest design in the SH series of chips, according to today's Wall Street Journal. The Japanese and French companies will jointly manufacture the microprocessors, which are used in consumer electronics products. The SH-5-series chip will begin shipping by the end of next year. It will run at 400MHz, giving at least double the speed of performance of the SH-4 200MHz, Hitachi said. ST Micros said it was aiming to use the component in multimedia-heavy devices such as video game consoles and hand-held computers. ®

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