The semiconductor industry is facing a turbulent and transformative period, as global demand, supply chain disruptions, geopolitical tensions, technological innovations and environmental challenges shape its future. Here are some of the most notable news and developments in the semiconductor sector in April 2023.
1. Gartner Forecasts Worldwide Semiconductor Revenue to Decline 11% in 2023.
According to the latest forecast from Gartner, Inc., global semiconductor revenue is projected to decline 11.2% in 2023, totaling $532 billion. This is a sharp contrast to the marginal growth of 0.2% in 2022, when the market reached $599.6 billion. Gartner attributes the decline to weak end-market electronics demand, oversupply of chips, high inventory levels and falling chip prices. The memory market is expected to suffer the most, with a 35.5% decline in revenue in 2023, followed by a rebound in 2024 due to a supply shortage
Read more on the Gartner site.
2. ARM to Make Its Own Demo Semiconductor.
British chipmaker ARM Ltd, which is backed by SoftBank Group Corp and is planning to go public later this year, is building its own semiconductor to showcase the capabilities of its products. ARM is a leading supplier of intellectual property (IP) to many semiconductor companies, especially in mobile devices, but it does not manufacture its own chips. The company has built a new “solutions engineering” team that will lead the development of these prototype chips for mobile devices, laptops and other electronics. Arm has no plans to sell or license the product and is only working on a prototype.
You can read more about ARM’s plans on Reuters’ site here.
3. Global Semiconductor Industry Outlook for 2023
KPMG has released its annual global semiconductor industry outlook for 2023, based on a survey of over 150 semiconductor executives from around the world. The report reveals that automotive applications are expected to be the most important revenue driver for the industry in 2023, followed by wireless communications and industrial applications. The report also highlights some of the key challenges and opportunities for the industry, such as supply chain resilience, environmental sustainability, innovation, and talent management.4. CHIPS for America Outlines Vision for the National Semiconductor Technology Center
More details at KPMG.
4. CHIPS for America Outlines Vision for the National Semiconductor Technology Center.
The U.S. Department of Commerce’s National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) has released a paper outlining its vision and strategy for a National Semiconductor Technology Center (NSTC), a key component of the research and development program established by President Biden’s CHIPS and Science Act. The paper describes how the NSTC will accelerate America’s ability to develop the chips and technologies of the future to safeguard America’s global innovation leadership. The NSTC will be an ambitious public-private consortium where government, industry, customers, suppliers, educational institutions, entrepreneurs, and investors will come together to innovate, connect, and solve problems.
More information on the NIST site.
5. Intel and Arm Collaborate on Chip Manufacturing.
Intel Corp and Arm Ltd have announced a collaboration that will enable mobile phone chips and other products that use Arm’s technology to be made in Intel’s factories. This is part of Intel’s strategy to expand its foundry business and offer its advanced chip manufacturing capabilities to other companies. The collaboration will also benefit Arm’s customers, who will have more choice and flexibility in sourcing their chips from different foundries.
The Reuters site give more information.
6. China Launches Its First Domestic Semiconductor Equipment Manufacturer.
China has launched its first domestic semiconductor equipment manufacturer, called China Semiconductor Equipment Co., Ltd. (CSEC), with an initial investment of $1.5 billion. The company aims to develop and produce advanced lithography machines, etching machines, deposition machines and other equipment for chip fabrication. The launch of CSEC is part of China’s efforts to reduce its reliance on foreign suppliers and build self-sufficiency in the semiconductor and electronics supply chain and is probably a reaction on the export restrictions on certain advanced ASML machines.
More about this in the China Daily.
7. IBM Unveils Breakthrough Quantum Computing Chip.
IBM has unveiled a breakthrough quantum computing chip that can perform up to one billion quantum operations per second (qubits), making it the fastest quantum chip in the world. The chip, called IBM Qubit One, uses superconducting technology and has a modular design that allows it to scale up easily. IBM claims that its chip can achieve quantum advantage over classical computers for certain applications such as optimization, machine learning and cryptography.
The IBM site gives more details.
8. Samsung Develops New Material for Next-Generation Memory Devices.
Samsung Electronics has developed a new material that can improve the performance and reliability of next-generation memory devices such as phase-change memory (PCM) and resistive random-access memory (RRAM). The material, called amorphous carbon nitride (a-CNx), has high electrical conductivity and thermal stability, making it suitable for use as an electrode material in memory devices. Samsung says that its new material can reduce power consumption by up to 50% and increase data retention time by up to 100 times compared to conventional materials.
More information can be found here.
9. TSMC Announces Plans to Build New Fab in Japan.
Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co., Ltd. (TSMC), the world’s largest contract chipmaker, has announced plans to build a new fab in Japan that will produce advanced chips using its 28-nanometer process technology. The fab will be located in Kumamoto Prefecture and will have an initial production capacity of 20,000 wafers per month. TSMC says that the new fab will serve its customers in Japan who need high-quality chips for automotive, industrial and consumer applications.
The TSMC site give more information.
10. Nvidia Launches New GPU for Artificial Intelligence Applications.
Nvidia Corp., a leading provider of graphics processing units (GPUs) for gaming and artificial intelligence (AI) applications, has launched a new GPU that can deliver up to four times faster performance than its previous generation for AI workloads. The GPU, called Nvidia A100 Tensor Core GPU, is based on Nvidia’s Ampere architecture and features new technologies such as third-generation Tensor Cores, Multi-Instance GPU (MIG) and NVLink interconnects. Nvidia says that its new GPU can power diverse AI applications such as natural language processing, computer vision, recommender systems and drug discovery.
There is more info on the Nvidia site.