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UMC, Samsung supply 28nm chips to Qualcomm

Posted: 05 Jul 2012 ?? ?Print Version ?Bookmark and Share

Keywords:28nm? processors? baseband chips?

Qualcomm Inc. has signed up United Microelectronics Corp. and Samsung Electronics Co. Ltd to supply 28nm chips. The move, reported in the Taiwan Economic News, is expected to help Qualcomm cope with tight supply at Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co. Ltd.

UMC is expected to start supplying Snapdragon S4 processors and 3G/4G baseband chips made using 28nm process in the 4Q12, the report said.

UMC will supply between 3,000 and 5,000 wafers per month, between 20 percent to 33 percent of the monthly volume supplied by TSMC, the report said. The chips have already been taped out in a UMC 28nm CMOS process and passed verification.

No detail was provided about the supply deal with Samsung.

Last week UMC announced that it has licensed 20nm CMOS process including FinFETs from IBM Corp. And this capability will enhance UMC's manufacturing process roadmap potentially making it more attractive to established and potential customers.

Also last week Paul Jacobs, CEO of Qualcomm Inc., reportedly said he has not ruled out owning a wafer fab or putting large amounts of cash down to ensure the firm's supply of semiconductor chips. That was according to a Bloomberg report.

Jacobs also reportedly said that he expected Qualcomm would be meeting customers' volume requirements by the end of 2012, although it is not clear whether he was already factoring in additional foundry deals.

- Peter Clarke
??EE Times

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