Globalpress Summit: Xilinx comfortable with 28nm

Globalpress Summit: Xilinx has no issues with 28nm, according to senior vp Victor Peng.

“We have all the capacity we want and yields are ahead of plan,” says Peng. He points out that Xilinx uses TSMC’s HPL process which is not used by any of the companies which have complained about lack of 28nm supply.

Nonetheless Peng told the Summit that Xilinx has shipped “1,000s of units.” Thousands seems rather small bearing in mind that Xilinx started sampling 28nm over a year ago.

Asked if the company was comfortable with the supply situation for the future, Peng replied: “We’re comfortable with what we’ve got. We have what we need right now.”

Other 28nm customers of TSMC have publicly complained about the lack of supply.

Most virulent was Qualcomm which said it was actively looking for multiple alternative suppliers. Qualcomm CEO Paul Jacobs did not blame yields but cited lack of capacity for constrained supplies which impacted Q1 revenues.

Altera gave the same reason – no criticism of yields but said it could not get enough supply to meet an up-tick in late-quarter demand.

Jen-Hsun Huang of Nvidia is the only CEO to publicly accuse TSMC of having poor yields on 28nm and also announce that he’s off to Samsung to get 28nm fab. However some people have pointed out that Nvidia’s yield problem could be down to design flaws.

No one expects process transitions to go smoothly, but there had been a hope after the horrors of 40nm, that lessons learnt during that node would translate into a better experience at 28nm.

The jury is still out.

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