Articles about semiconductors

Burned chips. pic by shutterstock

We burned chips in 2016... but then semiconductor sales got healthy again. Whew

Global semiconductor revenue is set to rise 7.2 per cent over 2016 because of ramping demand for DRAM and app-specific standard products for the IoT and allied markets, according to Gartner's digital witch-doctors. ASSPs (app-specific standard products) are like ASICs but for general customers, not individual ones. "After a …
Chris Mellor, 23 Jan 2017
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Toshiba may sell silicon biz to contain fallout of nuke plant problems

A troubled nuclear power station strategy in the USA has Toshiba considering the partial sale of its Japanese semiconductor business. Nikkei (in Japanese) names Western Digital as a potential buyer, along with several investment funds. The company hopes to get between $1.77bn and $2.65bn for a 20 per cent stake in the …
1nm_transistor

Boffins eschew silicon to build tiniest-ever transistor, just 1nm long

Boffins from the United States Department of Energy’s Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (Berkeley Lab) and beyond say they've cracked a new way to make very, very, small transistors. As explained in their Science paper MoS2 transistors with 1-nanometer gate lengths, the authors explain silicon is a lovely substance with …
Simon Sharwood, 10 Oct 2016
Smartphone showing Chinese flag

China forms 27-strong alliance to grow silicon standards

27 Chinese semiconductor companies have formed a “High End Chip Alliance” (HECA) aimed at creating a more integrated ecosystem across the Middle Kingdom and with an ambition to create new silicon standards. Some of the members don't have enormous profiles outside China – hands up if you're familiar with Tsinghua Unigroup, …
Graphene on glass schematic

A glass of soda-and-lime is the straight dope for graphene

Researchers from the Brookhaven National Laboratory (BNL) in the United States have turned up an unexpected property of common glass: it makes a good substrate for graphene-based electronics in applications like solar cells and touch-screens. While graphene has had “wonder-material” status for a few years now, it's difficult …
Fairchild logo

Remember Fairchild? It's still around, and worth $2.4bn in takeover cash

Fairchild Semiconductor, a company synonymous with the rise of Silicon Valley, has agreed to a $2.4bn acquisition offer. Arizona-based ON Semiconductor said it would pay $20 per share in an all-cash offer to acquire Fairchild and create a combined company targeting the mobile, automotive and industrial chip markets. "The …
Shaun Nichols, 19 Nov 2015
Milhouse Van Houten

Your 30-second guide to why Samsung is acting all Smugsun today

Samsung is getting a nod of approval from investors and analysts as the electronics giant has revealed gains in its mobile, semiconductor, and consumer electronics operations. The South Korean firm said its Android phone business managed to grow its sales figures in its third quarter of 2015, raising hopes that further gains …
Shaun Nichols, 29 Oct 2015
sony semiconductors

Sony prepares to lop off semiconductor biz

Sony is reorganizing its devices division, and spinning off its semiconductor business. The Japanese electronics giant said that on April 1, 2016, Sony Semiconductor Solutions will begin operating as its own business with manufacturing, R&D, and sales operations. The new business will continue to operate as part of the Sony …
Shaun Nichols, 6 Oct 2015
Toshiba

Toshiba CEO and execs quit over $1.2bn six-year accounting scandal

Toshiba CEO Hisao Tanaka and seven other bigwigs have quit after a probe concluded profit figures had been inflated beyond their real values. The Japanese electronics giant said in a brief statement [PDF] today that $1.2bn (£770m, 151.8bn yen) was incorrectly added to Toshiba's income-before-tax figures in the 2008 to 2014 …
Shaun Nichols, 21 Jul 2015
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IBM sued for talking up semiconductor business it couldn't give away

A US public pension fund has filed a class-action lawsuit against IBM, claiming the company misrepresented the value of the semiconductor business it offloaded to GlobalFoundries in October. The suit filed by the City of Sterling Heights Police & Fire Retirement System in Michigan accuses IBM of having inflated its own share …
14nm Samsung Exynos 7 Octa

Samsung pulls ahead of Qualcomm in mobe chip race with 14nm Exynos

Samsung says it has begun mass production of silicon based on its new 14-nanometer FinFET process, pulling ahead of its competitors in the race to reduce the transistor size of mobile computing chips. The first product to make use of the tech will be a new version of Samsung's own Exynos 7 Octa, with adoption to expand to …
Neil McAllister, 17 Feb 2015
Suitcase bulging with cash

Hot DRAM! Samsung splurges $15 BILLION on Korean chip fab

Samsung Electronics has decided to spend a massive $15bn building a memory fab in South Korea. Samsung is the world’s largest DRAM chip maker, followed by Micron and SK Hynix. It also leads the NAND chip market, being ahead of Toshiba, SanDisk, Micron and SK Hynix. Toshiba and SanDisk are partners in flash fabrication. The …
Chris Mellor, 6 Oct 2014
No Sale

NO SALE: IBM won't cash in its chips with GlobalFoundries after all

IBM's hopes of unloading its loss-making semiconductor division to GlobalFoundries have reportedly been dashed, with GlobalFoundries refusing to budge on price. Word that Big Blue was planning to sell off its chips business first surfaced in February, when the company retained investment bankers Goldman Sachs to help it put a …
Neil McAllister, 25 Jul 2014
GlobalFoundries Fab 8

Things that make you go hmm: GlobalFoundries hires ex-IBM chip fabber

A former IBM exec who oversaw chip fabrication has been hired by GlobalFoundries, the company that's rumored to be buying IBM's chip fabrication wing. Henry DiMarco, a longtime Big Blue employee, has moved to GlobalFoundries as vice-president of site construction and facilities, to help out on the construction and " …
Jack Clark, 10 Jul 2014

Intel reveals its FrankenChip ARM killer: one FPGA and one Xeon IN ONE SOCKET

Updated Intel has expanded its chip customization business to help it take on the hazy threat posed by some of the world's biggest clouds adopting low-power ARM processors. The chip company announced on Wednesday at GigaOm Structure in San Francisco that it is preparing to sell a Xeon E5-FPGA hybrid chip to some of its largest …
Jack Clark, 18 Jun 2014

We're NOT DOOMED after all: Global semiconductor sales post record 2013

The PC business may be imploding and large chunks of the global economy may still be struggling, but you wouldn't know it from last year's worldwide semiconductor sales – they topped $300bn for the first time in history, according to the Semiconductor Industry Association (SIA). For the full year, the industry raked in $305. …
Rik Myslewski, 6 Feb 2014

Top chip baker: Rough times, high costs, tech hurdles ahead

SEMICON 2013 Ajit Manocha, the CEO of wafer-baker GlobalFoundries, sees plenty of choppy waters ahead for the good ship Moore's Law – and warns that navigating them will be increasingly expensive. As chip-baking processes shrink, it's getting more difficult to develop manufacturing techniques at a reasonable cost. Breakthroughs are needed …
Rik Myslewski, 10 Jul 2013

Samsung beat Apple for most chip purchases in 2012

Samsung surpassed Apple as the leading consumer of semiconductors worldwide in 2012, while slumping demand for traditional PCs and notebooks caused several other competitors to reduce their demand, according to the latest figures from research firm Gartner. "The PC market still represented the largest sector for chip demand, …
Neil McAllister, 23 Jan 2013

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