TSMC’s President for Europe, Maria Marced, told Electronics Weekly that ARM on TSMC’s 28nm gives better performance and power than Atom on Intel’s 22nm process. Chipzilla apparently missed the fact that it’s not just technology, it’s also the architecture.
She said that the term ’28nm’ or ’20nm’ does not refer to a gate-length it is merely a descriptor of a node. The quality of a node is no longer the number attached to it, but the characteristics of the devices made on it, she said.
While some punters were having yield problems with 28nm, Marced said that the defect density on 28nm is better than on 40nm at the same stage of product life.
She said that TSMC had 36 products on 28nm and compared with 40nm at the same stage, it had three times the number of tape outs and three times the speed of the deployment.
Marced expected TSMC’s 28nm production to be 10 percent of the company revenues by the end of the year and it will be in risk production on 20nm soon too.
Its 20nm process will deliver 1.9x density improvement over 28nm, with 25 percent less power consumption and 15-20 per cent more performance.
Intel is betting on Finfets which are a nonplanar, double-gate transistor built on an SOI substrate and it is rushing to them on its 22nm designs.
However TSMC said that it will wait unto 14 nm before bothering with FinFets. Marced said that the egosystem was not ready for Finfets at 20nm, and TSMC didn’t want to delay 20nm.
While the rest of the world is worried about what is happening in Europe, TSMC is expecting strong growth from Europe this year. Europe delivers about nine percent of TSMC’s cash and it expects this to increase this year.