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Taiwan’s TSMC urges customers to move from older nodes to 28nm

Chipmaker trying to get clients to move on from 40nm and above chips

TSMC. (Reuters photo)

TSMC. (Reuters photo)

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) — Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co. (TSMC) has recently been suggesting to customers of its oldest nodes to move their designs over to its 28nm process technologies.

TSMC brings in around 25% of its revenue making 40nm and larger chips, according to Anandtech. Older process nodes cost less, have high yields, and have adequate performance. However, it is not as profitable for chipmakers to build new capacity for older processes.

The Taiwan chipmaker recently announced plans to expand production capacity for mature and specialized processes by 50% over the next three years, focusing on 28nm-capable plants, the report said. In an effort to streamline manufacturing of simple, low-cost semiconductors around fewer and more widely available and expandable production lines, TSMC would like to see older node customers move to its 28nm chips, Anandtech said.

According to Kevin Zhang (張曉強), senior vice president of business development at TSMC, the company is not planning to expand capacity for its 40nm process technologies. And while customers will have to pay more for 28nm chips, they will also be able to get more chips per wafer due to the smaller node size.

Migrating to a more advanced process also has the benefits of reduced power consumption and better performance, per Anandtech.

Besides having several 28nm nodes made for a variety of client applications, TSMC is also bolstering its offerings of specialty 28nm and 22nm chips to fill the needs of several chips currently using outdated technologies, Anandtech added. The lion’s share of chips made using mature process technologies are used in smart appliances, phones, IoT devices, and automobiles.