SMIC isn't at the cutting-edge of the foundry business, it's behind the major foundry players but it's trying to close the gap somewhat. DigiTimes wrote today that SMIC has signed up Broadcom and Huawei's HiSilicon subsidiary for its 28nm process, and that Qualcomm will be the first to roll out 28nm chips at the Chinese foundry.
Shiuh-Wuu Lee, executive VP of technology development at SMIC, said he's confident in the firm's 28nm manufacturing and shared that they're getting "rather good" yields. Demand for SMIC's 28nm process will come primarily from Chinese IC designers:
SMIC has moved its 28nm PolySiON process to volume production, and will move forward having its 28nm HKMG offering ready for commercial production, Lee said. Clients for SMIC's 28nm HKMG node will include Broadcom and HiSilicon, Lee added.
Lee also said that demand for 28nm manufacturing coming from China's local IC design companies will rise significantly, and believes that many of them are interested in placing orders with SMIC once the foundry moves its 28nm HKMG process to volume production.
SMIC also revealed risk production of chips made on its 14nm FinFET process could start as early as 2018.