TSMC, the world’s biggest chip foundry for hire, has reportedly stepped up development of its 10nm manufacturing process.
According to Digitimes, the foundry decided to speed up development due to Samsung’s aggressive push towards 14nm. Earlier this year Samsung and Globalfoundries teamed up in an effort to bring 14nm FinFET to market as soon as possible. The new alliance hopes to have the first chips out by the end of the year, although volume availability comes a bit later, in 2015.
TSMC is on track to start producing its first 16nm FinFET parts in Q4 2014. The company has already moved up to speed up the rollout and it has brought forward the launch of its 16nm FinFET Plus process, which should offer even better efficiency than its standard 16nm process.
Industry sources told Digitimes that TSMC was caught off guard by the Samsung – Globalfoundries 14nm announcement. As the competition is launching its 14nm process earlier than expected, TSMC is accelerating the development of 10nm technology in order to maintain a competitive edge.
Intel remains the elephant in the room, as its first 14nm products are practically ready for commercial shipments. However, Intel’s foundries are still not open to anyone who needs them. Chipzilla has loosened its stance on fab deals, but of course it is still not letting direct competitors use its fabs and this is not going to change due to more or less obvious reasons. the elephant in the room, as its 14nm process is ment of 10nm technology in order to maintain a competitive edge.