Texas Instrutments has given a less optimistic outlook for the third quarter of 2021, but industry sources have claimed that TI still sees prolonged lead times. TSMC has disclosed it is in early talks with clients about the feasibility of constructing a fab in Germany, and industry observers say such a fab could be a boost to Europe's car supply chain. DIGITIMES Asia president Colley Hwang has just published the first of his latest series of analysis of the global IT supply chain.
Networking IC specialist Realtek Semiconductor has said that it remains guardedly optimistic about its business prospects for the third quarter of 2021 as demand for its products across the board remains robust.
The persistent tight supply of controller ICs for memory devices, particularly those built using a 28nm process node, will stretch into the end of 2022, with related suppliers expecting only to fulfill no more than 80% of their orders, according to industry sources.
SEMICON Taiwan 2021 has announced that starting from September, five online technology forums will be held as a prelude to its physical exhibition, which has been rescheduled to December. A spike in COVID-19 infections locally in Taiwan prompted the organization to postpone its physical event.
After the peak of component crunch in the second quarter along with insufficient inventory in the third quarter, stress of stagnant deliverables on the highway seems to have been relieved. A consensus of the supply chain is to let the manufacturers breathe. The fourth quarter is in line with the traditional off-season, and the days should be easier. From foundries to IC design houses, Taiwanese manufacturers are in the limelight now. DIGITIMES Asia has noted in its reports that the foundry sector is now a seller's market with strong demand to last in end of 2022. Such messages are based on dynamic changes in demand-supply status of IT industry from the most upstream of the supply chain. Component shortages and component cannibalization require long-term rolling tracking. DIGITIMES Asia has been making dynamic adjustments to its views in line with rolling forecasts.
TSMC is evaluating the feasibility of building more fabs overseas fabs, including Germany, according to the foundry house's chairman. Strong demand and tight capacity are sending foundry quotes rising. UMC is mulling raising service fees further by 10-15% in first-quarter 2022 for 40nm process. MIH CEO Jack Cheng believes the Foxconn-led open platofrm for EV development is revolutionzing the car industry.
China's top-3 OSAT providers - Jiangsu Changjiang Electronics Technology (JCET), Tongfu Microelectronics and Huatian Technology - are expected to see their combined revenue surge over 20% on year in 2021, according to Digitimes Research.
United Microelectronics (UMC) plans to raise its foundry quotes for 40nm process technology by 10-15% starting the first quarter of 2022, as well as quotes for other mature process nodes by 5-10%, according to sources at IC design houses.
The industrial production index in Taiwan increased 18.37% in June 2021, compared with the same month in 2020. The annual production index by some major industrial divisions is as follows: manufacturing increased 20.20%, mining & quarrying decreased 5.11%, electricity & gas supply decreased 0.29%; water supply decreased 4.39%, according to the Ministry of Economic Affairs (MOEA).
Demand from the car sector has been strong, and foundry houses are stepping up efforts to rolling out more automotive chips. Apple's manufacturing partners are seeing COVID-induced disruptions to their production in Vietnam, and will have to move poduction of new-gen AirPods to China. And in China, construction of 5G base stations is slowing down this year.
First-tier automotive IC IDMs in the US, Japan and Europe have reportedly approached OSATs including ASE Technology, Powertech Technology (PTI) and Greatek Electronics to book backend capacity for 2022, according to industry sources.
OSATs are expected to raise their quotes again for wire-bonding packaging services in the first half of 2022 to reflect ever-rising costs for materials such as leadframes and molding compounds as shortages worsen, according to industry sources.
Taiwan-based pure-play foundries including TSMC, United Microelectronics (UMC), Vanguard International Semiconductor (VIS) and Powerchip Semiconductor Manufacturing (PSMC) are all gearing up for a boom in demand for automotive electronics by ramping up their output for related chips, according to industry sources.
Chip shortage gas been serious, but Apple and carmakers are both asking for more ICs, the former looking to secure supply for its upcoming devices and the latter to prevent dirsuptions to their productions. Chinese IC designers are seeking more advanced manufacturing support from TSMC for their AI and HPC chips. Taiwan-based server makers are keen on expanding production capacity to meet strong demand.
HiSilicon is gearing up in-house development of OLED display driver chips (DDI), but has encountered difficulty in gaining sufficient support from foundries and OSATs capable of providing 40/28nm process manufacturing and high-end testing services, according to industry sources.
In light of the global semiconductor demand surges and chip companies looking to avoid the risks from the trade war and supply chain storage, the India government has recently provided new incentives to global semiconductor companies to set up fabs in the country, after a similar move failed a decade ago. But most of the global leading semiconductor companies still stay unresponsive due mainly to a lack of a complete ecosystem in South Asia.
Backend houses have seen their delivery lead times for MCUs, audio ICs, USB interface ICs and power management chips extend all the way to as long as two months from the previous two weeks, due to persistently tight wire-bonding capacity supply, according to market sources.
Apple has stepped up its chip purchases for the upcoming iPhones, while first-tier automotive component vendors in the supply chains of carmakers in Japan are also vying for more available ICs, according to industry sources.