Items tagged with GlobalFoundries

Earlier today, Barron's published an article speculating that GlobalFoundries would delay its 14nm product ramp by several quarters as it struggled with unspecified production problems. GlobalFoundries has denied any such issues in a statement to Hot Hardware, and has specifically told us that its 14nm ramp plans remain on-track. The state of GlobalFoundries 14nm ramp is important for multiple reasons. Earlier this year, the company announced that it would drop its own plans for a hybrid 14nm/20nm hybrid node (14nm XM) and would instead adopt Samsung's 14nm process technology. At least some of... Read more...
If Intel's recent 14nm Broadwell Y unveil has made anything clear, it's that the company is now determined to go toe-to-toe with every foundry manufacturer at the 14nm node. It wasn't initially clear if this would be the case. While Intel made a big splash with its first 14nm announcements, news of the delays and a robust rebuttal from TSMC concerning the health and capability of its own 20nm and 16nm offerings made it seem as though Intel might have been rocked back on its heels and fighting a defensive front. Where other semiconductor manufacturers have openly acknowledged the end of Moore's... Read more...
Late last month, the Wall Street Journal leaked news of a partnership with TSMC, in an agreement that put a formal signature on what sources have previously implied was years of behind-the-scenes collaboration. Apple has explored its options with foundry partners that aren't Samsung for several years as its relationship with that company has grown sour. Last year, Apple reportedly attempted to buy a significant stake in a particular fab for a billion dollars, but CEO Morris Chang rebuffed the idea (or at least, the price tag), saying that TSMC preferred to retain flexibility and control of its... Read more...
Last week, we paid a visit to ARM's headquarters in Cambridge, England and sat down with the company for multiple deep dives into its structure, processor architecture, and the future of its product design. The semiconductor market for mobile and hand-held devices has changed dramatically in the past six years and ARM has had to evolve alongside it. This is the first in a series of articles designed to profile different aspects of the company and its competition with Intel... ARMs Race: Licensing vs. Manufacturing In Mobile... Read more...
Last week, we paid a visit to ARM's headquarters in Cambridge, England and sat down with the company for multiple deep dives into its structure, processor architecture, and the future of its product design. The semiconductor market for mobile and hand-held devices has changed dramatically in the past six years and ARM has had to evolve along side it. This is the first in a series of articles designed to profile different aspects of the company and its competition with Intel.   ARM's Licensing and Design Model Most readers are aware that ARM has a very different business model than Intel. Specifically,... Read more...
The big news of the day, based on a leaked Intel roadmap, is that Broadwell won't launch in 2014. Instead, we'll see a Haswell refresh with unknown performance characteristics (slightly higher clocks are the best bet) and, late in the year, a "Haswell-E" server part on the X99 chipset. Ivy Bridge-E, the six-core LGA2011 CPU, is still set for later this year, on the X79 chipset. The big assumption coming out of this is that Intel has delayed 14nm production and that Broadwell wont' ship at all in 2014. Based on sources we've spoken to, this isn't accurate. The flaw in the current story is that it... Read more...
It's been obvious for weeks that Intel's earnings call this afternoon wasn't going to have much good news in it. With total PC shipments falling 13% quarter-on-quarter -- the worst decline in nearly 20 years -- there was no way Intel would escape being hit by that drop. Today, Santa Clara reported that its Q1 profits fell 25%, to $2B, down from $2.7B in the first quarter of 2012. Gross margins took a hammering, as well, falling to 56.2% from 64% in Q1 2012. Despite these problems, Otellini was upbeat. "“Amidst market softness, Intel performed well in the first quarter and I’m excited... Read more...
AMD announced late today that it's reached a new wafer supply agreement (WSA) with GlobalFoundries. This is the second time AMD has renegotiated the agreement this year, and while the new arrangement offers Sunnyvale some needed flexibility, it carries further penalties as well. First, a few quick explanations. The WSA governs the purchase and manufacture of microprocessors. AMD agrees to buy a certain number of wafers from GF per quarter and it negotiates payment for those wafers in several different ways. In 2011, AMD and GF agreed that Sunnyvale only had to pay GlobalFoundries for fully functional... Read more...
Ready to nerd out? Great. Globalfoundries has rolled out details surrounding its new FinFET transistor architecture, which is engineered specifically with mobile devices in mind. No real surprise, given that mobile is quite clearly the future. Desktops have already fallen behind laptops, and seems just a matter of time before tablets start making a serious dent in the laptop market -- at least for average, non-gaming consumers. Now, Globalfoundries is showcasing its 14nm-XM offering, which is said to be the industry's finest non-planar architecture.  The technology is expected to deliver a... Read more...
Last month, TSMC's CEO Morris Chang made waves when he suggested that it could make sense for the company to dedicate fabs to particular customers. Fresh reports today, however, suggest that both Apple and TSMC made major bids for exclusivity on future TSMC production facilities, and both were rejected. Does this mean Chang's earlier comments were misinterpreted? No -- but it does demonstrate the difference between what Chang/TSMC is willing to contemplate and what companies like Qualcomm and Apple want. TSMC may be willing to commit full fabs to customer-specific production, but the company isn't... Read more...
ARM and GlobalFoundries have been working together ever since AMD spun GlobalFoundries off as an independent business, but the two companies are taking steps to further expand their joint development efforts. As part of the deal, ARM has committed to creating a "full platform of ARM Artisan® Physical IP, including standard cell libraries, memory compilers and POP™ IP solutions." We typically discuss ARM as selling licenses to various companies like Samsung, Texas Instruments, and Nvidia, but licenses aren't the company's only product. When ARM talks about physical IP, it's referring to... Read more...
Trusted sources we've spoken to in the semiconductor industry have implied that TSMC is considering a partnership with Apple that would realign the manufacturer's technology roadmap and fundamentally alter the balance of power between the foundry and its other customers. Morris Chang, TSMC's CEO, spoke about the possibility of closer collaboration with its customers in general terms last Friday, but at the time we thought the likelihood of an Apple alliance was unlikely. We've since been given reason to think otherwise. A dedicated alliance with Apple that gives the company first access to 20nm... Read more...
Trusted sources we've spoken to in the semiconductor industry have implied that TSMC is considering a partnership with Apple that would realign the manufacturer's technology roadmap and fundamentally alter the balance of power between the foundry and its other customers. Morris Chang, TSMC's CEO, spoke about the possibility of closer collaboration with its customers in general terms last Friday, but at the time we thought the likelihood of an Apple alliance was unlikely. We've since been given reason to think otherwise. A dedicated alliance with Apple that gives the company first access to... Read more...
Leading Silicon-on-Insulator (SOI) wafer manufacturer Soitec published an updated roadmap today, detailing how it plans to make fully-depleted SOI technology (FD-SOI) available through the 14nm process node, but there's some question as to the degree of industry support for the company's technology. In theory, FD-SOI could solve some of the scaling problems semiconductor foundries are facing, but the associated cost and difficulty of implementation are still unknowns. "Each new generation of technology faces unique challenges, and we currently are at an inflection point where we cannot rely solely... Read more...
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