Foundry firm TSMC announced it will start manufacturing CPUs in 2008, but didn't disclose the name of the chips developer.
“TSMC will start out its CPU production on a 45nm high-end process with low-cost PCs being the initial targeted market,” said Rick Tsai, chief executive of TSMC, at a conference with investors, reports DigiTimes web-site.
The head of TSMC noted that the contract maker of semiconductors was in the “investment stage” of the CPU manufacturing and the first revenues will be realized only in the second half of 2008.
It was especially emphasized that manufacturing of microprocessors requires technologies that are “more demanding than what TSMC has been used to dealing with”, which indicates that TSMC is talking about leading-edge chips, not relatively simplistic special-purpose products made using bulk process technology. The chief executive indicated that his company has to allocate more resources in high-k, metal gate-related technologies in order to ensure high performance and low-leakage in CPUs.
Earlier this year it was reported several times that TSMC was on its way to manufacture central processing units for Advanced Micro Devices, but while the latter did not confirm it, it also did not deny it too. Nevertheless, there are many other companies interested in CPU manufacturing, including Microsoft Corp., Sony and other players in the consumer electronics field.