GlobalFoundries spoke with BSN* last week about their plans for 2010. They confirmed their $4.3 billion, Saratoga NY, Fab 8 is on schedule and will be shipping thousands of 300mm wafers with their 28nm ?Gate First? HKMG [high k metal gate] process in 2012.In case you wondered what is Fab 8, the answer is quite simple – after the acquisition of Chartered Semiconductor, GlobalFoundries now owns seven Fab facilities, with number eight being brought up in New York.
The managers spoke with quiet confidence about Qualcomm’s announcement of 45nm Low Power (LP) and 28nm (LP) technologies. Qualcomm said they will begin shipping products from Fab1 (Dresden) by fall of this year. Qualcomm uses the ARM IP for their 1.3GHz Snapdragon 8X50A, which will be a smaller 45nm version of the chip currently available. Next up is their dual-core Snapdragon (8X72) at 1.5Ghz. Then, there is the prospect of 28nm versions of Qualcomm’s future products.
GlobalFoundries promised to show their "proof of the pudding" would be on display the next day. The following evening, they invited a few of their friends to Caesars Palace for conversation, food, beverages, and sample wafers for us to guess what product they will become.
As we walked in the door, they put everyone into "bunny suits" and gave us "passports" which they immediately stamped with our destinations of Dresden, Singapore, Saratoga, and Abu Dubai. All places GlobalFoundries has planned fabs to pump out their wafers.
The relaxed conversation at the party from GlobalFoundries evolved around their obvious confidence by not making a big announcement about the wafers on display.
Three 28nm wafers
We had the pleasure of meeting Simon Segars and Warren East of ARM. East gave us a thumb nail sketch of his experience as CEO. East is like a proud father talking about his children. He said that the future is really exciting because of their partnership with GlobalFoundries. He said that ARM’s partners are pushing the leading edge of smartphone, netbook/smartbook, and tablet computers. In a moment of candor, East said that Intel is a real competitor moving into the small form factor devices which have traditionally been ARM territory. Both of ARM’s leaders appear ready to match Intel’s road map. Simon Segars hinted they were confident the ARM road map will soon have 64-bit IP and virtualization along with enhanced multi-core designs.
Around the corner, more people enjoying the relaxed atmosphere of the party compared to the high volume, frantic pace of CES show floors.
This week, GlobalFoundries will take over Chartered Technologies of Singapore ? more on that later coming later today.