Wednesday, September 4, 2019
Eight-inch IC foundries have seen their fabless customers engaged in the fingerprint sensor, touchscreen IC, analog chip and LCD driver IC sectors step up their pace of orders recently, according to industry sources.
These 8-inch foundries, based mainly in Taiwan and China, have experienced a slowdown in customer orders since 2019. The foundries saw their supply fall short of demand in 2017-2018, driven by strong chip orders for automotive electronics and IoT applications, the sources said.
With inventory levels falling for fabless chipmakers, 8-inch foundries have started seeing customer orders pick up recently, the sources indicated. The 8-inch foundries' fab utilization rates are expected to rise substantially starting the fourth quarter of 2019, with order visibility stretched through the first quarter of 2020, the sources said.
Demand for 8-inch fabs is expected to be robust at the end of the first quarter or the beginning of second-quarter 2020, driven by a notable return of orders from automotive electronics and IoT related chip suppliers, as well as outsourcing orders from IDMs, the sources noted.
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