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“The most ambitious ideas come with a million moving pieces. The only way to bring it all together is through the power of collaboration.” —TSMC
Indeed, that collaborative energy was out in full force throughout TSMC Open Innovation Platform® (OIP) Ecosystem Forum on Thursday, Sept. 17, 2015, at the Santa Clara Convention Center.
“There are a lot of myths in this industry, born of the lone innovator working independently,” said Rick Cassidy, president of TSMC North America, in his welcome remarks. “You in this room, frankly, debunk this myth. It’s not the lone genius. It’s a lot of geniuses all working with one another to make the impossible come through.”
As a pure-play foundry, TSMC, noted Cassidy, spends a lot of time thinking about how its customers achieve success, how it can work with partners to achieve success. TSMC OIP was born out of an idea to develop a model for supply chain collaboration to enhance efficiencies and reduce waste, to minimize expenses, and to generate greater and greater return. “It’s all about ROI—we want to make sure that we maximize that. What we’ve created is a system that drives faster time to design, faster time to market and, more importantly, faster time to money,” said Cassidy.
When most people think of the tech industry, semiconductors may not be the first thing to pop into their minds. However, as Cassidy highlighted in his talk, there are great opportunities for continued collaboration, innovation, and growth, thanks to a few key drivers.
Mobile is an industry driver that is expected to be around for a long time. Cassidy noted that year-over-year growth of 26% in smartphone shipments and a replacement metric that is approaching 50% leaves plenty of opportunity for continued growth.
The Internet of Things (IoT) is another strong industry driver. According to IC Insights, the IoT revenue growth rate from 2013 to 2018 is 21%. Yet, 99.4% of IoT devices are NOT connected, said Cassidy. “To me, that’s a lot of opportunity,” he noted.
By 2022, the average home, according to Gartner, will have more than 500 smart devices. “IoT will be one hell of a party,” said Cassidy. Connecting all of these devices will require a substantial amount of integrated technologies, with the ability to sense, compute, and communicate. “And that’s what you bring to the party,” Cassidy told a full convention center ballroom. TSMC’s contribution to the party, he noted, includes technologies for low power, process integration, and small form factor and packaging.
Automotive—with the promise of self-driving cars—represents another prime business opportunity for the semiconductor industry. Cassidy asked the audience to imagine a life with a driverless car—one that could adjust your wake-up time based on traffic conditions, choose the fastest route to get to the office, drop you off and park itself, and pick you up at the end of the day.
“The driverless car is going to reduce traffic, save you time, save you fuel, and reduce pollution,” Cassidy noted. “Your innovations are creating this new world in which we drive, or maybe in which we’re driven.”
IoT plus automotive equals a significant amount of data that will need to be stored and processed. That’s why high-performance computing is another large growth opportunity for the industry.
“There are opportunities for everyone and, frankly, I can’t wait to see what everyone comes up with,” Cassidy said. “Your innovation…is the heart of society’s technological advancement. You’ve transformed productivity, you’ve leveraged individual achievement into collective power.”
(Rick Cassidy photo courtesy of TSMC)