“Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company (TSMC) is enjoying a sweeping dominance in the 7nm process space, as it has entered volume production of APs for new iPhones set to hit the market in September using the advanced node and in-house developed InFO packaging process, and will also ramp up 7nm production to fulfill robust orders from more than 10 clients including HiSilicon, Qualcomm, AMD and Nvidia in the second half of 2018, according to supply chain sources,” Monica Chen and Willis Ke report for DigiTimes.

“Besides extending its lead over competitors in the 7nm race, TSMC is also thickening the capital and technology barriers for competitors to enter the 5nm field with a planned investment of US$25 billion,” Chen and Ke report. “TSMC’s commitments not to compete with clients or engage in branding efforts has enabled the pure-play foundry house to outperform rivals in winning trust from customers and further expand its foundry territories, the sources continued.”

“Industry sources said that in-house developed advanced packaging technologies are TSMC’s another crucial weapon to thwart competitors, allowing the company to offer one-stop services for clients. After its second-generation InFO packaging process kicked off volume production in 2017, its latest InFO-oS (InFO on Substrate) packaging technology has also cleared related customer verifications in 2018, enabling TSMC to defeat Samsung in wining orders from Apple to fabricate all the AP orders for new iPhones,” Chen and Ke report. “The sources noted that Samsung is developing at full throttles InFO packaging technology and it has also claimed to outpace TSMC in kicking off official production of EUV 7nm+ process, set for the second half of 2018, seeking to win back orders from Apple in 2019. But industry watchers said that the EUV 7nm process involves yield-rate issues and quality risks…”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: “Forever scrambling to catch-up” ought to be the South Korean dishwasher peddler’s motto.