A US firm is helping Samsung improve its semiconductor chips

Samsung Exynos

Samsung has joined hands with San Jose, California-based software company Silicon Frontline Technology to improve its semiconductor chips. The Korean behemoth is reportedly seeking help from its new American partner to improve its yield rates.

Samsung has had issues with semiconductor yield rates since 5nm solutions. Things have gotten worse as it advanced to 4nm and 3nm chips. At one point, the company’s yield rate for 3nm solutions was said to be just 20 percent. This means that only 20 chips out of 100 manufactured meet the required quality standards. These troubles resulted in it losing its primary customer Qualcomm to arch-rival TSMC. The Korean behemoth also tumbled down in the global semiconductor industry.

But despite the setbacks, Samsung began 3nm production ahead of TSMC. It is now looking to build on this advantage to rise again. And yield rate improvements are critical for that. Silicon Frontline Technology will help the Korean behemoth in its ambition. The American firm, which has expertise in semiconductor design and verification solutions, will reportedly assist Samsung in chip manufacturing processes, including the front-end process.

According to the Korean media, Silicon Frontline Technology will provide chip solution qualification evaluation and electrostatic discharge (ESD) prevention technology to Samsung. ESD is reportedly a primary cause of defects in semiconductor chips, resulting in low yield rates. It is caused by friction between equipment and metal during manufacturing. Preventing or reducing ESD helps improve the yield rates as there are lesser manufacturing defects.

Samsung expands its partnership with Silicon Frontline Technology

This isn’t the first instance of Samsung working closely with Silicon Frontline Technology. The Korean behemoth reportedly applied the latter’s tech in chip design and production processes in the past. It obtained “satisfactory results,” sources familiar with the matters said. It is now expanding its partnership with the American firm to improve its semiconductor solutions.

If this partnership helps Samsung reach where it wants to be in the semiconductor industry, it may regain some of its customers as well. As said earlier, Qualcomm has switched to TSMC for the production of the newly-launched Snapdragon 8 Gen 2. Nvidia has also entrusted the Taiwanese firm for manufacturing its latest RTX40 series GPUs. Samsung would be hoping to leverage its upper hand over TSMC in the 3nm process node to regain the lost ground. It now remains to be seen if the Korean behemoth can turn things around quickly before its arch-rival catches up to it.

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