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Total Telecom: Chinese semiconductors are undergoing a revolution, from crisis to self-sufficiency for the production of 28nm and 14nm tech

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- LONDON, June 16, 2021 /PRNewswire/ -- Total Telecom recently spoke to Hui He, Associate Director and Head of China Semiconductor Research at Omdia, discussing the severity of the ongoing semiconductor supply crisis and how the industry is shifting to meet heightened demand. Hui He estimates that China can build an entirely self-sufficient production line of 28nm and 14nm chips by the end of this year and next year respectively.


Learning from Hui He, Total Telecoms finds that the soaring demand for smartphones remains the biggest use case for chips because the smartphone makers are ordering the components ahead of time, more about 30% or 40% than before. However, semiconductor manufacturers are struggling to keep pace.

In China, the Chinese government has been helping to facilitate such growth, offering tax breaks and financial incentives to semiconductor companies willing to invest. According to Hui He, China's domestic equipment and material vendors are developing faster and faster. It is estimated that China can build an entirely self-sufficient production line by the end of this year. Semiconductor Manufacturing International Corporation (SMIC) is an excellent example of the kind of growth taking place in the Chinese market right now. SMIC has had 28nm mass production capacity for many years and has even moved to 14nm.

On the other hand, many countries, such as the US and those within Europe, want to increase their domestic production and decrease their reliance on foreign production. Digital sovereignty has become a hot topic for legislators, who predict that an independent and competitive technology industry will be at the heart of national economies in the coming decades. Hui He suggests that a market is definitely required if you produce the products. The final market will be at the device-end, such as smartphones and PCs, cloud and edge computing, or one of the hottest topics right now: automotive. However, in recent years, Europe is lacking the biggest consumers of these components.

Total Telecom believes that efforts to transform the global semiconductor market are clearly underway, but much like semiconductor production itself, shifting the scope of international markets is inevitably a slow and laborious process, the results of which remain to be seen.

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