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TSMC to make Intel i845 and VIA P4X266

Bridge over troubled wafers?

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TSMC is in something of an invidious position it seems: it will be producing rival Pentium 4 chipsets from those two most bitterly opposed chip companies, Intel and VIA.

Intel has signed TSMC to produce its i845 chipset (aka Brookdale), at a rate of 2000 8in wafers a month this quarter, but increasing on a quarter-by-quarter basis, the Taiwan Economic News reports.

VIA, meanwhile, is using the foundry to churn out its P4X266 chipset - a product Intel claims is unauthorised and over which the chip giant may take its rival to court.

Politically, it's a tricky situation for TSMC to be in, which is why it's keeping mum about it. Economically, however, it's good news, and should help the company use up some of that spare capacity it has at the moment. Intel has sold over a million i845 chipsets, we hear, so demand is clearly there. ®

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