Trade Resources Industry Views New TSMC Fab to Target Orders for Driver ICs

New TSMC Fab to Target Orders for Driver ICs

Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company's (TSMC) planned 12-inch wafer fab in China could be vying for 16nm chip orders from China's local IC design houses specializing in the development of LCD driver ICs, touchscreen controllers, TDDI (touch and display driver integration) chips and other single-chip solutions mainly for mobile device applications, according to sources from Taiwan's IC design sector.

By the time TSMC's 12-inch fab is ready for volume production, the foundry's 16nm node will already have become quite mature, said the sources. At the same time, TSMC's major clients engaged in the development of mobile SoCs will be gearing up for transition to 10nm and even 7nm, the sources indicated.

TSMC's 12-inch fab in China may also attract orders for low- to mid-end smartphone chips, which will require the foundry's more mature 16nm manufacturing node, the sources suggested.

In addition, TSMC's planned capacity of the new 12-inch fab in China is actually small, the sources noted. But is could carry out an expansion after the fab gets fully utilized.

TSMC has disclosed production capacity of its 12-inch fab in Naning, China is set at 20,000 wafers monthly, and the company expects to commence volume production of chips built using 16nm process technology in the second half of 2018.

China-based IC packaging and testing houses such as Jiangsu Changjiang Electronics Technology (JCET), Nantong Huada Microelectronics and Tianshui Huatian Technology will stand a chance of building ties with TSMC, according to the sources. TSMC might have to partner with a local backend firm in exchange for more business opportunities in China, said the sources.

China-based IC packaging and testing houses are being backed by their government, which is making efforts to boost development of the local IC industry sectors.

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New TSMC Fab in China Likely to Target Orders for Driver ICs, Touchscreen Solutions