Fairchild Semiconductor says it has adopted a new policy under which the company will not obsolete any of its parts except in very rare instances.
The company will not discontinue production of any of its chips unless there is an "unforeseen unavailability" of certain raw materials or an inability to source certain equipment needed to make a part or possibly because of a legal or regulatory requirement, according to a Fairchild spokesperson.
In cases where Fairchild does stop making a part, customers will have 12 months after notice of discontinuation to place their final order, and also have an extended 12-month period after the last order to take delivery.
"This 24-month total lifetime supply policy, combined with this new non obsolescence policy is unsurpassed in the industry," said Chris Allexandre, senior vice president of worldwide sales.
Vijay Ullal, president and chief operating officer at Fairchild, said the company decided to "change our approach to obsolescence" after customers told the chipmaker the company's obsolescence practices were negatively affecting design and production cycles.
The changes are effective immediately, the company said.