Rumours are circulating that Huawei is firing up a new semiconductor project to help overcome US sanctions
Leaked on Chinese social network Weibo, rumours suggest that Huawei is beginning the process of building its own semiconductor fabrication project.
The project, reportedly named ‘Tashan’ – fittingly meaning ‘daring’ or ‘courageous’ – will build 45nm chips entirely without US technology. The Weibo post said the project would be operational by the end of the year, with a 28nm line also planned.
Huawei has, somewhat unsurprisingly, declined the opportunity to comment on this rumour, but an anonymous source from Huawei’s HiSilicon reportedly denied having heard of the project when asked.
Huawei’s supply chain was decimated back in May when the latest wave of US sanctions radically limited their access to US technology, with the move most notably severing ties with key partner Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company (TSMC). As a result, Huawei has been forced to reach out to a raft of new partners to fill the gap, such as Shanghai Microelectronics, who could help them build the chipsets in-house.
However, whether these chips can live up to the high standards set by their competitors remains to be seen; TSMC and Samsung, for example, are already planning to build chips based on 3nm node. While the rumoured Tashan Project would be a good start in solving Huawei’s immediate supply chain issues, major hurdles remain if they are to stay competitive in the chipset space.
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