Qualcomm on Thursday announced that it will be working together with China’s SMIC to produce latest Snapdragon processors developed with 28nm technology.
Qualcomm has already partnered earlier with SMIC to manufacture power management and other chips and the new agreement is seen as an upgrade to an existing partnership. According to the announcement, Semiconductor Manufacturing International Corp will work with Qualcomm on 28 nanometer technology for production of Snapdragon Chips.
Dr. Tzu-Yin Chiu, CEO and executive director at SMIC said in a statement:
“We are delighted to enter this collaboration with Qualcomm Technologies since this marks a significant milestone on the readiness and competitiveness of SMIC’s 28nm process technologies.”
SMIC will also offer technological support on 3DIC and RF front-end wafer manufacturing for Qualcomm Technologies for the growing demand of Snapdragon processors. SMIC mentioned that Qualcomm;s 28nm technology will help the company to increase the product life cycle when compared with the previous nodes. The deal will also help SMIC’s position in China as it would manufacture Qualcomm’s latest Snapdragon processor on 28nm node, both PolySION and high-K dielectrics metal gate (HKMG).
According to market research firm IC Insights, SMIC is the fifth largest chip-maker in the world. Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co Ltd, the world’s largest chip manufacturer also manufactures chips for Qualcomm but had delayed the supply to Qualcomm and Nvidia in 2012.
Qualcomm has face antitrust charges in China for taking advantage of its dominant position in the market and is likely to face a fine of $1 billion. Qualcomm support for 28nm technology will allow SMIC to produce chips for other companies as well.
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