IC Insights projects the global semiconductor market will grow by 14% in 2018, reaching $509.1 billion. Meanwhile, average semiconductor content in electronic systems is expected to reach 31.4%, according to IC Insights.
The European Commission is continuing its investigation into Qualcomm's alleged sale of UMTS baseband chips below cost. Qualcomm maintains that the commission "will find that Qualcomm's practices are pro-competitive and fully consistent with European competition rules."
Microsemi has launched a new synchronization integrated circuit family for use in 5G wireless and network infrastructure equipment. The IC family can be used in distributed units, centralized units and other applications, according to Microsemi.
Stanford University researchers have been successful in training artificial neural networks using an optical circuit. "This would enhance the capability of artificial neural networks to perform tasks required for self-driving cars or to formulate an appropriate response to a spoken question, for example," said research team leader Shanhui Fan.
There is an "undeniable" trend toward the use of leading-edge nodes for high-performance computing, according to D2S CEO Aki Fujimura. Meanwhile, deep learning provides a huge opportunity with the way that it enables new software applications, Fujimura said.
Developments in artificial intelligence and 5G applications will require chipmakers to develop solutions beyond Intel and Nvidia's current chipsets, according to industry sources. Chipmakers and firms such as Intel, Nvidia, Google and Microsoft are among the companies currently developing AI chipset solutions.
Chinese memory firms Yangtze Memory Technologies, Fujian Jinhua Integrated Circuit and Innotron Memory plan to begin commercial production next year. YMTC has received orders for more than 10,000 32-layer 3D NAND flash chips, while Jinhua and Innotron expect to focus on DRAM production and 8-gigabyte LPDDR4 chips, respectively.
Analog Devices has debuted a wideband synthesizer with an integrated voltage-controlled oscillator that can be used in aerospace, wireless infrastructure and other applications. ADI's ADF5610 features 50% less power dissipation and simpler architecture than alternative solutions.
FD-SOI has left the realm of niche technology, thanks to its applications in IoT, 5G, edge computing and other areas, according to Soitec Chief Technology Officer Carlos Mazure. "FD-SOI is really driving new uses for older technology," said Screen Semiconductor Solutions Senior Vice President and Chief Technology Officer Olivier Vatel, adding, "It's not at the cutting edge like finFETs, but it's still interesting enough to semiconductor makers."
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