Intel has enlisted Taiwanese smartphone chip designer MediaTek as a key partner in its efforts to recapture chipmaking dominance. The chips will be manufactured by Intel on their ‘Intel 16‘ node, a redesigned version of the node previously known as 22FFL. The revelation comes as the US-based semiconductor sector, particularly Intel, is on the verge of getting large government subsidies to enhance US-based chip manufacturing.
“As one of the world’s leading fabless chip designers powering more than 2 billion devices a year, MediaTek is a terrific partner for IFS as we enter our next phase of growth. We have the right combination of advanced process technology and geographically diverse capacity to help MediaTek deliver the next billion connected devices across a range of applications.”
-IFS President Randhir Thakur
MediaTek presently utilizes TSMC for the majority of its foundry services, but it is trying to diversify its supply chain by expanding its production capacity in both the United States and Europe. With facilities in both locations, Intel’s Foundry Service (IFS) fits the criteria, and Intel envisions long-term cooperation spanning numerous technologies and applications.
MediaTek’s planned development of smart edge devices complements the ‘Intel 16’ process, which is an upgraded version of the company’s established 22FFL node, which began shipping in 2018. The technology is designed for low-power semiconductors with good performance and design simplicity for a faster time to market.
Intel’s decision to invest an initial $20 billion of its funds in the Intel Foundry Services division comes as the corporation attempts to recover years of loss, in part by giving manufacturing services to chip makers such as MediaTek. The company already has traction, having negotiated contracts with Qualcomm and Amazon Web Services (AWS) as well as the US Department of Defense. Other industry titans, like Nvidia, have expressed interest.
Bringing MediaTek to the list is another significant accomplishment as Intel changes the foundry business model. The majority of MediaTek’s chips are presently manufactured in collaboration with TSMC. Still, the original Intel partnership doesn’t appear to be capturing much of TSMC’s business, and the two firms aren’t sharing any financial details with today’s statement.