Monday, November 2, 2020 01:01 a.m.
Financial Times sources claim Huawei plans to build a dedicated chip plant in Shanghai that will manufacture parts for its core communications infrastructure business.
It will be operated by a partner, the city-backed Shanghai IC R&D Center, and will be considered experimental until it is ready to make chips that Huawei can use.
The plant will start making chips based on a very old 45nm process before moving on
To 28nm chips by late 2021.
That would be advanced enough to make chips for smart TVs and IoT devices, and both sides said, it would reach 20 nanometers by late 2022, when it could make most of its 5G cellular devices.
Between this and an inventory of chips, Huawei could theoretically keep its communications devices running with relatively little turbulence, while its chips from 2021 onwards could.
It lags behind international competitors, except that it may be good enough for the domestic market for Huawei to improve its designs.
Huawei might not have to worry about its long-term future if the reports are accurate, as I noticed, however, there is no mention of phones in this plan.
Mobile devices need very advanced chip processes to remain competitive in the advanced end The Kirin 9000 processor in the Mate 40 Pro is a 5nm chip, and Shanghai’s reported plans won’t help.
Huawei could turn to manufacturing allies like SMIC for more modest phone chips, but it’s still likely to curtail its phone offerings once its current supplies run out.
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