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  • Samsung Foundry Update!

    It is hard to believe that Samsung is celebrating their 10th anniversary in the foundry business this year. It certainly has not been an easy road but as of late you cannot argue with the results. Samsung is the first foundry to put 14nm silicon into smart phones, beating the #1 semiconductor company (Intel) and the #1 foundry (TSMC). That alone is worthy of significant praise, just wait until the next iPhone refresh. If, as I have “predicted”, the Apple A9 and the next generation of QCOM SnapDragons are based on Samsung 14nm, 2015 will be the year of Samsung Foundry, absolutely.

    Samsung is hosting another VIP event in San Francisco next week. Paul McLellan was my date last year, this year I’m taking my beautiful wife. If you want to stay happily married for 30 years you need to schedule regular date nights and this event totally counts.

    The theme last year was “The voice of the body”, this year it's Smart, Connected Lifestyle:

    In a world that is moving faster and faster, how can you get everything from your mobile device the moment you want it? Join Samsung Semiconductor executives for overviews on:

    • Mobile memory and flash technology
    • R&D driving innovation forward
    • Advanced process technology
    • Exynos application processor
    • IoT strategy

    Last year Samsung talked about 14nm and this year they delivered it. I’m hoping this year they'll talk about 10nm because from what I hear, next year Samsung will deliver it. If you want to talk about trust, trust is delivering on what you promise, absolutely.

    The next big event is the 52nd Design Automation Conference in San Francisco. Given all of the parties, DAC will count as multiple date nights so I’m good to go through June. Samsung had the best DAC presence last year for the foundries in my opinion. They showed 14nm wafers and silicon and delivered on that promise with the Exynos 7420 and the Galaxy S6. In fact, if you look at the tear-down, the S6 used 16 Samsung chips out of the 25 total. Shannon is the product family name for Samsung's mobile chipsets, you can read more about them here: “The Curious Case of Samsung's Shannon Chips”.

    From what I’m told, Samsung will have another DAC theater for customer and partner presentations. Last year I sat through quite a few of them and really enjoyed it. They were very interactive and well attended. This year I expect a much bigger DAC attendance based on the other conference numbers which were up double digits. My guess is that semiconductor design is getting much harder and more competitive in regards to performance, power, area, and yield so people are searching much more aggressively for design tricks and tips than before. Just my opinion of course.

    You can still get free I Love DAC tickets HERE. SemiWiki will also be sponsoring the Love IP Party at DAC on Monday night and yes it counts as a date. However, we will not be dressing up. We grew up in the '70s and once is enough! Since SemiWiki is a sponsor we will have tickets to give away so let me know if you need one.