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Press Releases and News

Foundries Shouldering a Heavy Load

Phoenix, Arizona February 17, 2009 - The semiconductor foundry market is facing a number of challenges in 2009. Most of the burden is being born by the foundry suppliers. The foundries continue to invest in new technologies, not just advanced nodes, but new processes for high voltage, mixed signal and power management. All these investments are forcing foundries to assume most of the risk while margins continue to become tighter. Offering more options is one way to capture customer loyalty but it also increases foundry costs.

DRAM and NAND Flash: Doing the Memory Tango

Phoenix, Arizona July 31, 2008 - Why is it critical to look at DRAM and NAND memories together? As the target application for memory technologies continues to shift away from desktop personal computing, the value propositions of memory technologies have also changed. In this report, we examine the strategic issues of the total memory market where manufacturing and technology decisions decide the profitability and health of participants and end use implementers.

NAND Market – Where’s Apple?

Phoenix, Arizona June 30, 2008 - Despite the rough start to the year, Semico forecasts 2008 NAND revenues will increase 13%, with unit growth of 35%.

RF Integration: Getting It All Together

Phoenix, Arizona June 24, 2008 - The holy grail in wireless ICs is a cost-effective one chip solution. The challenge has been the integration of all digital and analog functions, including RF, on a single SoC. To date, this has only been accomplished for relatively low-power, short-range networks. As the range increases, the amount of transmission power required also increases, requiring separate RF power components (Power Amplifiers, RF Switches and RF Filters). This determines the level of integration that can be achieved.

DDR3 and the Rambus Tipping Point

Phoenix, Arizona June 18, 2008 - An Amicus Brief was filed by three major OEMs this week in the ongoing legal activities between Rambus and the memory manufacturers. What would concern these OEM about events that occurred almost 10 years ago?

Semico has neither the legal expertise nor the desire to comment on these ongoing cases. However some aspects of the settlements could come to a conclusion by the end of this year. We can comment on the potential impact on the memory supply and demand equilibrium.

Feeding the Beast: Servers Consume High Density DRAM Modules

Phoenix, Arizona June 2, 2008 - This report focuses on DRAM modules in the server segment and some of the memory packaging density that is achieved. Servers drive the DRAM density and much of the packaging technology. This is one segment where DRAM is not keeping up with monolithic density demand. Packaging has become more important in the semiconductor industry as greater functionality is put into smaller spaces. This is true in the server segment where Blades are very compact but require huge amounts of memory.

MCU Memory: A Flashy Trend?

Phoenix, Arizona May 27, 2008 - Even the microcontroller (MCU) market is expanding the use of Flash memory. The ubiquitous MCU populates end-market products from automobiles to Smart Cards. The broad applications base and wide range of embedded memory and technology offerings contribute to its steady unit and revenue growth. Although there is severe pricing pressure on average selling prices, revenue grew 11 percent in 2007 and unit shipments increased by 19 percent.

DDR3 Interface Moves Closer

Phoenix, Arizona May 12, 2008 - Semico examines the strategic issues impacting the beleaguered DRAM market. DRAM vendors are announcing intentions to increase prices, except for the biggest vendor. DDR2 is still the highest volume product. New memory capacity is coming on line. Revenue is forecast to decline 20 percent in 2008. Units will grow by 9 percent and bit shipments will increase by more than 50 percent. But the really hot issue to end markets and the memory market is when will DDR3 move into volume production? Semico separates hype from reality in this report.

The Market for a New Class of Devices - Field Programmable Computing Arrays

Phoenix, Arizona April 21, 2008 - The programmable logic market has evolved in performance and capability as the industry strives to deliver innovative products geared towards existing and emerging applications. This evolution has given rise to a class of devices that Semico believes is different from traditional programmable logic solutions, warranting a new classification. These devices are coined as Field Programmable Computing Arrays (FPCAs), and offer the combination of programmability, reconfigurability, cost, performance and power that many system designers are seeking.

DRAM Capacity: Return of Boom and Bust?

Phoenix, Arizona March 27, 2008 - The combined Supply and Demand of DRAM and NAND drive the prices for both. Semico introduces Memory Reports that highlight the impact of the new relationship between DRAM and NAND supply and demand.

Many DRAM manufacturers were initially attracted to NAND technology because of the similarities of NAND and DRAM manufacturing processes. More than 50% of total Memory revenue is from companies participating in both DRAM and NAND markets. Of the $58B total 2007 memory revenue, $45B was contributed by DRAM and NAND.