According to the latest news from the supply chain, Intel has decided to outsource some chips to TSMC, which is expected to use its 3nm process for production in 2022.
Intel will become TSMC’s second-largest customer on 3-nanometer chips, after Apple, the sources said.
The source said that TSMC’s 3nm process is another full-node new technology after 5nm. It is currently expected to be trial-produced in 2021 and mass-produced in the second half of 2022.
In addition to Apple A17 and Intel orders, chip manufacturers including AMD, NVIDIA, and Qualcomm, which will turn to embrace Samsung’s 5nm in 2020, have also booked TSMC’s 3nm production capacity in 2024.
TSMC has been increasing capital investment and expanding factories since last year, the purpose is to increase the production capacity of advanced process chips. To this end, TSMC also approved a plan of 15.1 billion US dollars, which is used to increase the production capacity of advanced technology.
In addition, TSMC increased its capital expenditure in 2021 by nearly 50% year-on-year to between $25 billion and $28 billion, of which 80% of the capital expenditure was used for the research and development of advanced process chip technologies such as 3nm and 2nm.
Southbridge chipset production is outsourced to Samsung
Last week, according to news from South Korean media, Samsung Electronics received the first order from Intel. A semiconductor industry source said Intel outsourced production of its Southbridge chipset to Samsung. The chipset is installed on the computer motherboard and plays the role of controlling the input and output operations of the computer.
Samsung may manufacture the chips at its foundry in Austin, Texas, which has a production line equipped with 14-nanometer process technology, the report said. It is understood that starting in the second half of this year, the company will produce 15,000 300mm wafers per month at the facility.
In late December last year, foreign media reported that Samsung would expand its semiconductor factory in Texas to make room for the next generation of manufacturing equipment. The company believes the plant plays a vital role in securing orders from U.S. tech companies. Some have speculated that Samsung may increase its foundry production in the U.S. to curb rival TSMC.
Currently, the company is expanding its foundry business to improve its position in the foundry market and try to narrow the gap between it and TSMC in the foundry market.
An industry source said: “Although Samsung failed to win Intel’s GPU orders this time, this chip foundry order is still significant because Samsung has laid the foundation for winning high-end chip orders in the future.”
By 2023, Intel will manufacture most of its own CPU products
In 2020, Intel has experienced a series of challenges, such as the market value surpassed by rival Nvidia Corporation of the United States, the abandonment of Intel processors by Apple, shrinking market share and the pressure of strategic transformation proposed by hedge fund Third Point.
The three new computers Apple released last November did not use Intel chips. The new computer uses Apple’s self-developed M1 chip and uses a 5-nanometer process. These chips are mainly foundry by Asian chip factories. In contrast, Intel supplies chips using a 10-nanometer process. New CEO Geelsinger said the 7-nanometer process will be used for Intel chips that will be delivered in 2023.
The coronavirus pandemic has temporarily overshadowed some of the challenges Intel faces. Remote work has led to unprecedented demand for PCs and chips.
At Intel’s fourth-quarter 2020 financial report meeting in the past two days, the incoming new CEO and the outgoing old CEO attended together, and unanimously shouted to the public: The public should maintain confidence in Intel’s 7nm processor!
The incoming new CEO Kirsinger said that although Intel’s 7nm process has been delayed in the past, in terms of product yield, there has been significant progress recently and it has gradually recovered. He is very satisfied with the progress, but in view of the company’s products It is indeed a large range, so Intel will also outsource some chips to foundries for production. Of course, even so, the future Intel helmsman is still confident that by 2023, most of the CPU products will be manufactured by Intel.
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