Semiconductor market news(Feb. 13 to 19)丨Android phone makers hold excess inventory of electronic components; Intel 11th Gen Rocket Lake CPUs Reach EOL; Foundries offer discounts to cope with market downturn…

01. Android phone makers hold excess inventory of electronic components

Feb. 15, 2023, According to reports, Chinese mobile phone manufacturer Xiaomi has recently had a high inventory of electronic components, including a serious excess inventory of processors. Most Android brands, like Xiaomi, are facing the risk of high inventory levels.

The report pointed out that Xiaomi's inventory of electronic components is equivalent to about 200,000 to 300,000 smartphones, and the excess inventory of processors comes from MediaTek and Qualcomm.

The report further stated that due to weak demand, Xiaomi and most Android brands are at risk of high inventory levels. For example, the inventory of finished products and components for Samsung mobile phones may not fall to a reasonable level until June.

The report predicts that these excess inventories may be passed on to authorized distributors of electronic components. However, high inventory levels at authorized distributors may lead to weaker demand in the coming quarters.

02. Insiders: Foundries offer discounts to cope with market downturn

Feb. 16, 2023, According to industry insiders, UMC has offered a 10-15% price discount to customers willing to increase their order volume in the second quarter of 2023.

Sources said that foundries including UMC had intended to maintain their quotations, but in order to maintain the utilization rate of fab capacity, they have begun to offer discounts or other favorable terms to customers.

The source further revealed that, in addition to UMC, TSMC wants to resume discounts for specific customers and order volumes, while VIS offers some customers more free wafers as a discount. In addition, according to earlier reports, Samsung Electronics plans to reduce foundry prices by 10% in response to weak overall market demand.

03. TI plans to expand production capacity at Japan's Fukushima fab

Feb. 16, 2023, According to Nikkei Asia, Texas Instruments plans to expand its gallium nitride (GaN) wafer production capacity in Japan.

The report pointed out that although the overall market is slowing down, some markets covered by Texas Instruments, such as automobiles, remain unaffected. Demand for industrial robotics and automation is also strong. These applications require mature process products, and supply is still tight.

Products using gallium nitride are in high demand, according to Texas Instruments. The company will narrow its target and invest in important technologies, and will mainly invest in the Aizu fab in Fukushima Prefecture, Japan, to expand production capacity.

As for the transformation of Texas Instruments' sales model in recent years, the company's head of Japan said that TI is changing its sales model from distribution to direct sales, and this strategy of being closer to customers is the right choice. Supply can directly meet customer demand, making it easier and faster for products to be transferred to customers.

04. Infineon starts building 300-mm Dresden power semiconductor fab

Infineon Technologies is starting construction of its new semiconductor plant for analog/mixed-signal technologies and power semiconductors. The company plans to invest a total of approximately five billion euros in the plant, which is set to begin production in 2026. This constitutes the largest single investment in the company’s history.

“We’re picking up the pace by expanding our production capacities in order to leverage the growth opportunities which the megatrends decarbonization and digitalization are offering us,” says Infineon CEO Jochen Hanebeck. “We see structurally growing demand for semiconductors, for example for use in renewable energies, data centers and electro-mobility. By building the 300-mm Smart Power Fab in Dresden we are establishing the prerequisites necessary to successfully meet the rising demand for semiconductors.”

This investment by Infineon is an essential contribution to achieving the European Commission’s declared objective of reaching a 20 percent share of global semiconductor production in the EU by 2030. Semiconductors for industrial and automotive applications from the Dresden Fab will help secure value chains in key European industries in the future.

In addition, the investment by Infineon strengthens the manufacturing basis for the semiconductors that drive decarbonization and digitalization. Analog/mixed-signal components are used in power supply systems, for example in energy-efficient charging systems, small automotive motor control units, in data centers and in applications for the Internet of Things (IoT). The interaction of power semiconductors and analog/mixed-signal components makes it possible to create particularly energy-efficient and intelligent system solutions.

05. Intel 11th Gen Rocket Lake CPUs Reach EOL, Farewell 14nm!

Intel announced to partners on Tuesday that the company would discontinue the company's 11th Gen Rocket Lake-S CPUs, marking February 23, 2024, as the last shipment date for the two-year-old processor series. The 11th Gen Core Intel Rocket Lake-S processors were built on the 14nm process and will mark the end for all client CPUs within the core family using that node. Partners will have until August 25, 2023, to order the Rocket Lake-S CPUs from Intel before the company stops further orders.

Intel Will No Longer Produce 14nm CPUs For Client PCs As 11th Gen Rocket Lake CPUs Hit EOL Status.

Additionally, Intel has decided to stop manufacturing the Xeon W-1300 processors due to sharing identical processor architecture. That said, the final date for shipments and orders will be the same for this chipset.

The Rocket Lake series debuted in 2021 and utilized the 14nm process established in 2014 by the company. The core architecture, Cypress Cove, was much different than the Ice Lake's laptop CPUs that utilized the 10nm process. This decision by Intel caused the chipset to be limited to eight cores on the CPU die. The previous generation used a maximum of ten cores on its dies.

06. FPGA vendor Lattice ends 2022 with strong growth

Lattice Semiconductor Corp. (Hillsboro, Oregon) completed an excellent 2022 with strong growth and increasing profitability. This was likely down to its focus on industrial, automotive and communications sectors.

The FPGA vendor achieved sales of US$176.0 million in 4Q22, up 24.1 percent on year. The company made a net profit of US$51.9 million, almost doubling the profit from a year before.

For the full year Lattice announced a net profit of US$178.9 million on sales of US$660.3 million. Sales were up 28.1 percent year-on-year and profit was again almost double that of the previous year.

“We grew revenue 28% for the full year 2022, with continued strong growth in our strategic segments of industrial and automotive, and communications and computing,” said Jim Anderson, CEO of Lattice, in a statement. “We delivered 86 percent annual growth in net income on a GAAP basis and 64 percent on a non-GAAP basis.”

Anderson added: “As we begin 2023, while we’re certainly not immune to any macro-economic challenges impacting the industry, the company is well positioned in secular growth markets, with an expanding product portfolio, accelerating customer momentum and strong financial execution.”

07. Notebook shipments slump further on month in January as channel inventory remains issue, says DIGITIMES Research

The global top-5 notebook brands, not including Apple, saw their combined shipments plunge 29% on month and nearly halve from a year ago in January due to a slow channel inventory digestion and the fact that the market was in the transitional period before the brands will launch their new products and therefore reduced orders for their existing models, according to the latest figures from DIGITIMES Research's monthly notebook report.

Hewlett-Packard (HP) returned as the largest notebook brand in January since the US-based vendor had better inventory digestion than competitors. Dell was the second-largest with an on-month shipment increase thanks to its ramp-up of orders for some enterprise models.

Lenovo's January shipments plummeted sharply on month as the Chinese brand was seriously undermined by the high channel inventory in its key markets, the figures show.

Shipments of the top-3 ODMs together slipped 24% on month in January. Compal performed the best in the month as its largest client Dell placed increased orders, while its orders from Taiwan-based brands had remained steady.

    Stay tuned

    To receive the latest news via email, please click the bottom to subscribe.

    Related Market Reports View More