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TSMC Builds Up 3D IC Assembling Capability to Vie for Lucrative Business

2012/08/14 | By Ken Liu

Taipei, Aug. 14, 2012 (CENS)--Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co. (TSMC) is vigorously increasing talents of its packaging and test unit as part of its plan to venture into the profitable 3-dimention IC packaging and test field with a team of over 400 specialists.

Based on the brisk buildup of its packaging and test strength, industry executives estimated that TSMC is confident of securing Apple's foundry contracts for next-generation processors designed around 3D process.

People said that TSMC lost the chance for making Apple A3 processors to Samsung because of its lack of the capability to package and test the chips, reasoning TSMC's energetic recruitments of 3D IC packaging and test talents.

The expansion is also associated with robust development of 2.5D ICs at TSMC's customers, including Xilinx Inc., Advanced Micro Devices Inc. (AMD), Nvidia Corp., Qualcomm Inc., Texas Instruments Inc. (TI), Marvell Technology Group, and Altera Corp.

Industry executives said TSMC has poached talents from Taiwan's big-name IC assemblers, including Advanced Semiconductor Engineering Inc. (ASE), Siliconware Precision Industry Co., Ltd., and Powertech Technology Inc., to fill up its packaging and test unit's vacancies.

In spite of the expansion, TSMC feels that hurdle to entry into 3D IC remains high and it will enter the sector by starting with 2.5D Si-interposer IC technology.

TSMC's move to enter 3D IC packaging and test field has kept the island's IC assemblers alert. They said they will move into high-end packaging and test field as well.

Some assemblers felt that impact of TSMC's entry into high-end packaging and test sector on them would be limited although unavoidable. They estimated most packaging and test customers will diversify the supply sources.