A semiconductor refers to a material whose electrical conductivity is between that of a conductor and an insulator at room temperature. Most of today’s Electronic products, such as computers, mobile phones, and smart story machines, are closely related to semiconductors. It is no exaggeration to say that many electronic products can hardly function properly without semiconductors.
In recent years, the state has successively launched industrial funds, science and technology innovation boards and preferential tax policies for the industry, to vigorously support the development of the semiconductor industry in terms of reducing financing difficulties and tax burdens. Under the combined effect of multiple favorable factors, the development speed of my country’s semiconductor industry has been accelerating, and AI chips and smart components have also become the key targets for enterprises to compete for layout.
Overall, the complete semiconductor industry chain is roughly divided into three parts: chip design, EDA/IP/design services, wafer manufacturing/package testing. Among them, EDA/IP and design services are the technical source of the entire industry; chip design is a large part of the industry chain, and both the number of companies and sales output value occupy an important share; wafer manufacturing and packaging and testing are typical. As a capital-intensive industry, the development of high-end wafer technology and manufacturing equipment requires the support of cutting-edge technologies.
On the demand side, with the rapid development of the Internet of Things, drones, smart homes, smart cars, smart security, smart logistics and other markets, relevant users have higher demands on cloud storage and mobile phone storage capacity. In order to further meet the needs of diversified users, many semiconductor product manufacturers have taken active actions to develop more products with stable performance and rich functions.
Under the general trend of “intelligence +”, AI chips and intelligent storage components have become the top priority of many manufacturers’ layout. Domestic manufacturers Guoke Micro, Zhongxing Micro, Beijing Junzheng, Fullhan Micro, Jingjia Micro, Cambrian, Shenjian, Zhongke Shuguang, etc., based on their own advantages, have successively launched various types of security chips, vehicle sensor chips, etc. chip.
In fact, as far as the domestic situation is concerned, in addition to major breakthroughs in the field of chip design, it has also achieved outstanding results in the field of domestic chip manufacturing, packaging and testing. For example, in the field of chip manufacturing, SMIC has officially mass-produced 14nm chips. In the field of chip packaging and testing, mainland China has three chip packaging and testing giants, which have successfully entered the top ten of the global chip packaging and testing companies list.
At present, the core equipment in the major semiconductor fields is still monopolized by overseas manufacturers, and domestic equipment manufacturers have gradually achieved breakthroughs in etching, deposition, scribing, thinning, and single crystal furnaces. At the same time, the situation that many mid-to-high-end industrial chain links rely on foreign imports cannot be ignored. Innovating manufacturing processes, breaking through single-point technologies, and cultivating professional talents have also become important ways to enhance the comprehensive competitiveness of the domestic semiconductor industry.
According to SEMI forecasts, the global semiconductor equipment market is expected to recover in 2020, with sales increasing by 5.5% to US$60.8 billion, and the size of the semiconductor equipment market in mainland China increasing to US$14.9 billion. Starting from the second half of 2019, domestic fabs have successively entered an intensive equipment procurement period. In 2020, domestic semiconductor equipment has great potential for import substitution, and the market share of high-quality domestic semiconductor equipment manufacturers is expected to gradually increase.
In the era of the Internet of Everything, a large number of sensors are needed to collect data, and the demand for analog chips has increased significantly; the transmission of data promotes the development of wireless communication chips, and wireless communication chips such as ZigBee, WiFi, Bluetooth, and 5G will have huge development space; intelligent AI chips are required to play a pivotal role. Scenario-based and differentiated scenarios determine that ASICs will be more effective as special-purpose chips.
In 2020, the pace of 5G commercialization will be further accelerated, and the key links of the industrial chain such as chips, radio frequency components, and storage have become increasingly complete and ready to go, and the semiconductor industry has also entered a new era of development. Maybe in the new year, major companies will launch more high-quality new semiconductor products!
Edit: Today’s He Xi