"All cell phones use our technology," says IBM's Duncan Needler, "all the industry leaders manufacture with us."
The new SOI process is a hybrid 180 nm/130 nm technology base optimised to accommodate aggressive LTE standards and demanding worldwide coverage requirements
It is optimised for multi-band switching in next-generation smartphones, fitting for high-band LTE and Wi-Fi 5.8 GHz band ushering in the "world phone" that can be used anywhere.
The improved SiGe process called 9HP is a 90nm process that lets designers take advantage of the emerging e-band spectrum, operating at frequencies in the 70-100 gigahertz (GHz) range, allowing for new frequencies to be tapped in order to better manage massive volumes of data.
Applications include automotive radar, collision avoidance, optical communication links. Base-stations, wireless backhaul, test and instrumentation, military and aerospace.
"It's our fastest bipolar technology - 360GHz Fmax, 300GHZ Ft," says IBM's Ned Cahoon.
Semtech x is using it for optical transceivers operating at over 100GHz and Tektronix is using it in oscilloscopes.
Both processes are sole-sourced at IBM and run in the company's Burlington, Vermont fab. However the SOI process is also run at an old IBM fab in France operated by Altis.