Recognized as the global semiconductor industry leader, TSMC has taken up as much as 60% market share thanks to its leadership in 28nm, 20nm and 16nm FinFET technologies in the recent years. At the same time, UMC has been lagging badly behind ever since the 28nm manufacturing process, but fortunately, the Taiwan-based foundry claims it’s kicked off mass production of 14nm chips and anticipates to ship them in the first quarter of 2017.
UMC has recently announced its financial report for the fourth quarter of 2016, with a revenue of NT$38.31 billion, showing an increase of 13.2% compared to the same period of 2015. Mr. Po-Wen Yen, CEO of UMC, revealed that the company’s overall capacity utilization reached 94%, bringing wafer shipments to 1.66 million 8-inch equivalent wafers.
The company has made substantial progress for the 14nm according to Yen. “UMC’s 14nm transistor performance has delivered speed and leakage results which are comparable with the industry’s 14nm standards. Our yields have fulfilled customer requirements, and we anticipate 14nm wafer shipments to commence in 1Q17, highlighting our determined efforts to reach this important milestone.”
It’s unknown yet how good the UMC’s 14nm chip is, but we assume it should be the low-power type, which means there’ll be a long way for it to catch up with TSMC.