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A long term investor with over 40 years of experience, a highly educated: Ph. D. EE professional
  • Intel ( America ) Technology Lead In Semi-Design And Fabrication In Jeopardy! 0 comments
    Apr 18, 2014 8:21 AM

    In today's news from EETimes ( by Rick Merritt) indicated that Samsung, GlobalFoundry and TSMC are ready to make 14nm devices in the later part of 2014. It quotes: (http://www.eetimes.com/document.asp?doc_id=1321974&page_number=1

    The initial 14 LPE process targets early time-to-market products, delivering 20% more performance, 35% less power, and 15% less area than a planar 20 nm process. The two companies plan a follow-up LPP process that will sport 15% better performance than LPE and an undetermined advantage in power.

    By contrast, TSMC qualified its 16 nm FinFET process in November, and multiple customer chips now in development are using it. It expects a fivefold or bigger increase in the number of its 14 nm designs in 2015."

    It shows that Intel's 14nm process is less than 6 months lead over others. With all the design houses around the world to help these foundries design advance processors for wireless and CPU, it is reasonable to predict that Intel's lead will disappear soon. Even with America 300M people's support and 120B IR&D annual research funding, it is no match to the world that has 1.5B people and 4x times of talented engineers of the US produced annually. Engineers in other countries are just as talented and those in Intel; in fact, they may work harder than Intel's. The end result is clear. For those politicians in Washington, and state houses, it is time to think of a strategy as how to prevent this technology erosion rapidly. On the other side of the spectrum, analysts from the big stock brokerage firms, such as Mark Lipacis of Jefferies, Credit Suisse …., they suggested exuberant price targets for Intel ( target at $35/share) and SNDK ( target at $125/share), they really should tone down the rhetoric, since Intel and Toshiba are high cost producers. Toshiba in Japan is even higher cost than US. The future is even murkier than Intel's. If you don't believe this suggestion, just look at how many semiconductor manufacturer firm in Japan get out of semi business in the last few years and many left now. You can draw your own conclusion from here. For those semi enthusiasts from Seekingalpha, you may also need to tone down your expectations from Intel and SNDK as well. Do you agree?

    Disclosure: I have no positions in any stocks mentioned, and no plans to initiate any positions within the next 72 hours.

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